Drs. Richard Ries and Andrew Saxon warn that "without these medications, more than 90 percent of individuals with opioid addictions relapse within weeks or months of detox, all too often with serious or fatal consequences."
"We strongly believe that wider use of these medications is an important component of easing the opioid epidemic. We aren’t alone. On Wednesday, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said that this approach, called medication-assisted therapy, ” is one of the major pillars of the federal response to the opioid epidemic in this country.”
"We have been treating people with opioid addictions for more than 30 years. It doesn't make sense to us that, as the United States finally gears up to fight this epidemic, most clinicians are using the wrong approaches, like brief detox or being discharged to home or the street after a near-lethal overdose."
Drs. Ries and Saxon, professors of psychiatry at the UW School of Medicine, wrote an op-ed in STAT advocating for healthcare professionals to deliver medication-assisted therapy that is proven to work.