Author: Erin Bagalman
Federally certified opioid treatment programs (OTPs)?also called narcotic treatment programs or, often, methadone clinics?may offer opioid medications, counseling, and other services for individuals addicted to heroin or other opioids. The use of opioid medications to treat opioid addiction is subject to federal regulations beyond those that apply to the same medications used for other purposes (e.g., treating pain). With few exceptions, the use of the opioid medication methadone to treat opioid addiction is limited to OTPs; however, physicians who wish to treat opioid addiction using the opioid medication buprenorphine may obtain a waiver to do so outside an OTP. A non-opioid medication used in the treatment of opioid addiction, naltrexone, may be used by OTPs, physicians with waivers, or anyone with the authority to write prescriptions.