Integrated Substance Use Disorder Services


Integration of substance use disorder (SUD) treatment services are not getting adequate attention in health care settings, a new white paper suggests. The Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) Network released Integrating Substance Use Disorder and Health Care Services in an Era of Health Care Reform (PDF - 2443.46 KB) in March 2015. Current momentum for the integration of SUD and health care services stems from policy changes resulting from health care reform, as well as from growing evidence demonstrating improvements in patient outcomes form integrated services. Research shows that SUDs are common among patients in health care settings and should be treated in manner similar to other common diseases. This ATTC Network paper emphasizes the need for better integration of SUD and health care services and describes a variety of effective models, evidence-based interventions, and implementation strategies for treating SUDs within health care settings. The paper also highlights the work of the ATTC Network. The ATTC Network is the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) program designed to promote both workforce development and implementation of evidence-based SUD interventions. “The Network is an essential resource as states, providers, and the SUD treatment workforce embark on change under health care reform.” One such resource discussed was The ATTC/NIATx Network of Practice, an online learning community with SUD integration implementation instructions and additional resources to assist providers. The authors conclude that 1) there is a need for better integration of SUD and health care services; 2) there is an array of effect approaches for integration including models, interventions, and implementation strategies; and 3) SAMSHA’s ATTC Network is a key resource for guiding the SUD and health care services integration process.