Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Among the Commercially-Insured

Monday, June 11, 2018: 10:00 AM
1000 - First Floor (Rollins School of Public Health)

Author(s): Karen Shen; Eric Barrette; Leemore Dafny

Discussant: Abby Alpert

Recent reports document the rise in opioid use and abuse in the U.S., and the concomitant surge in opioid and heroin overdoses and deaths. There has been significant public attention and effort devoted to monitoring opioid use and to curbing inappropriate prescribing, e.g. via prescription-drug-monitoring programs (PDMPs) and insurer-imposed quantity limits. However, there is limited non-clinical research on the treatments provided to treat opioid use disorder. Using a national database of commercial insurance claims (accounting for more than a quarter of the under-65 population annually) over the period 2008-2015, we document key facts about the “landscape” for this population: incidence, types of treatment, and cost. We also study the impact on facilities, treatment, and outcomes, of insurance coverage expansions affecting different states and insurance groups.