Opioids & Substance Use

The AHRQ Academy provides information to support those who are implementing medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder in primary care settings.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Opioid Initiative   

Any Use and Frequent Use of Opioids Among Elderly Adults in 2015–2016, by Socioeconomic Characteristics

This AHRQ brief examines the relationship between socioeconomic status and opioid use among adults age 65 and over.

For Beating the Opioid Crisis, America Has Better Weapons Than Fentanyl Test Strips

This post on the Substance Use of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration blog is by the Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use. She cautions against relying on quick solutions to decrease opioid-related overdose deaths and emphasizes the need for strategies that aim to help people recover to healthy and productive lives.

Federal Nondiscrimination Laws and Opioid Use Disorders

This video from the Office for Civil Rights is part of a new campaign to educate the public about civil rights protections for individuals with opioid use disorders.

CMS Model Addresses Opioid Misuse Among Expectant and New Mothers

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced the Maternal Opioid Misuse (MOM) model, which supports coordinated care for pregnant and postpartum women who are Medicaid beneficiaries with opioid use disorder.

Dr. Collins Discusses Scientific Approaches to Stemming the Opioid Crisis With USA Today’s Editorial Board

National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins discussed research priorities related to treatment for opioid addiction, as well as nonaddictive therapies for chronic pain.

Evidence-Based Strategies for Preventing Opioid Overdose: What’s Working in the United States (PDF—11.4 MB)

This report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlights strategies for community leaders, local and regional organizers, nonprofit groups, law enforcement professionals, and members of the public to prevent overdose.

New Opioid Treatment Resources for Emergency Department Clinicians

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) released new resources for those implementing buprenorphine treatment in emergency department settings.

State and Local Policy Levers for Increasing Treatment and Recovery Capacity To Address the Opioid Epidemic: Final Report

This report from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation describes financing and workforce policies that can help increase capacity and improve access to treatment for opioid use disorder.

HEALing Communities Study: Developing and Testing an Integrated Approach To Address the Opioid Crisis

NIDA announced a funding opportunity for up to three research sites and one data coordinating center to assess the impact of evidence-based interventions to prevent and treat opioid use disorder in healthcare, behavioral health, justice, and other settings.

Tools & Resources

Exploring Value-Based Payment To Encourage Substance Use Disorder Treatment in Primary Care

This brief from the Technical Assistance Collaborative and the Center for Health Care Strategies explores how States and health plans are using value-based payment to encourage integration of substance use disorder treatment in primary care.

Evidence-Based Interventions for Adolescent Opioid Use Disorder

This report from the Urban Institute identifies promising evidence-based interventions to prevent and treat opioid use disorders in adolescents.

What Families Need To Know About Treatment for Adolescent Opioid Use Disorder

This Urban Institute fact sheet for families describes treatment options for adolescents with opioid use disorder and provides questions for families to ask treatment programs in order to identify high-quality care for adolescents.

How Schools Can Help Prevent Adolescent Opioid Use Disorder

This fact sheet from the Urban Institute highlights evidence-based programs that schools can implement to prevent opioid use disorder among adolescents.

Drug Overdose Deaths in the United States

This data visualization from NORC at the University of Chicago and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s USDA Rural Development maps drug overdose hotspots and overlays them with additional contextual data by State and county.

Criminal Justice Facts and Figures

This fact sheet from the Addiction Policy Forum highlights statistics and important research findings related to substance use and incarceration in the United States.

Remaining Optimistic When Treating Opioid Use Disorder (OUD): Burnout Challenges and Other Stressors for Clinicians and Physicians

This webinar from Relias explores the challenges of treating patients with opioid use disorder and suggests strategies for providers to stay positive and avoid burnout.

Research Findings

Racial and Ethnic Differences in Use of State-Operated Inpatient Substance Abuse Services, 2004–2005 Versus 2010–2011

This study in Psychiatric Services examines ethnic-racial differences, specifically referral source, length of stay, legal status, and diagnosis, in inpatient substance abuse treatment in Connecticut.

Investigating the Degree of Reliable Change Among Persons Assigned To Receive Mental Health Peer Specialist Services

This study in Psychiatric Services concludes that individuals with behavioral health conditions can benefit from frequent engagement with peer specialists.

Receipt of Timely Addiction Treatment and Association of Early Medication Treatment With Retention in Care Among Youths With Opioid Use Disorder

This study in JAMA Pediatrics examines whether timely receipt of MAT among youths with opioid use disorder is associated with greater retention in treatment than behavioral interventions only.


Visit the events calendar to find webinars, conferences, and workshops related to opioid use disorder and substance use.


H.R. 6 Opioid Package Signed into Law

A comprehensive legislative package to combat the opioid crisis was recently passed by Congress and signed into law by the President.

An Overview of Abuse-Deterrent Opioids and Recommendations for Practical Patient Care

This article in the Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare discusses strategies to manage chronic pain while minimizing risk for opioid use disorders.

The U.S. Has Two Opioid Epidemics: The Federal Response Should Consider Both

This blog from the Commonwealth Fund argues that there is a need for distinct strategies to address both misuse and abuse of prescription painkillers and heroin use disorder.

Opioid Response: A Recipe for Local, Impactful Results

This blog from the Public Health Foundation recommends a cross-sector approach for developing local strategies to combat the opioid crisis.

Why Opioid Addiction Will Persist Until Physicians Have a Panoramic View of Opioid Exposure

This blog from Health Affairs argues that physicians need to be more proactive in managing and preventing opioid use disorder in inpatient settings.


Explore the archived opioids and substance use news and resources: