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Buprenorphine Prescriber Training

APA offers a number of training approaches for medication assisted treatment.

The 8-hour training activities below meet the Federal training requirement of the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 (DATA 2000). Completion will allow qualified physicians to apply for a waiver to their Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) license, and thus to provide office-based treatment of opioid use disorder with buprenorphine. Physicians wishing to become waiver eligible can complete any one of the activities below.

Educational Offerings

Learning Method    
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Book-based Learning – Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder, Second Edition
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In-Depth Online Training via APA Learning Center
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Instructions for Applying for a Buprenorphine Waiver

Once you have completed one of the above trainings and claimed your CME credit, APA will report your completion to SAMHSA. To claim your Buprenorphine Waiver, you must go to SAMHSA's "Buprenorphine Waiver Notification" website no sooner than 15 days from now. APA sends SAMHSA notifications of waiver training completion biweekly, and your information will be included in our next transmission.

HHS Releases Practice Guidelines for Administration of Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Use Disorder (April 27, 2021)

In an effort to get evidenced-based treatment to more Americans with opioid use disorder, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released new buprenorphine practice guidelines that among other things, remove a longtime requirement tied to training.

The Practice Guidelines for the Administration of Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Use Disorder provides an exemption from certain certification requirements under 21 U.S.C. § 823(g)(2)(B)(i)-(ii) of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). The Practice Guideline will be effective as soon as it is published in the federal register on April 28, 2021. As noted, eligible prescribers must submit a notice of intent to SAMHSA and receive a waiver before being able to treat patients under the Practice Guideline.

Specifically, the Practice Guidelines provide that:

  • With respect to the prescription of certain medications that are covered under applicable provisions of the CSA, such as buprenorphine, practitioners, defined as physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified registered nurse anesthetists, and certified nurse midwives, who are licensed under state law, and who possesses a valid DEA registration, may be exempt from the certification requirements related to training, counseling and other ancillary services.
  • Practitioners utilizing the exemption are limited to treating no more than 30 patients at any one time. Time spent practicing under the exemption will not qualify the practitioner for a higher patient limit.
  • This exemption also allows practitioners to treat patients with buprenorphine without certifying as to their capacity to provide counseling and ancillary services.
  • Under the exemption, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified registered nurse anesthetists, and certified nurse midwives are required to be supervised by, or work in collaboration with, a DEA registered physician if required by state law to work in collaboration with, or under the supervision of, a physician when prescribing medications for the treatment of opioid use disorder. This requirement does not apply to practitioners who are employees or contractors of a department or agency of the United States acting within the scope of such employment or contract.
  • Practitioners who do not wish to practice under the exemption and its attendant 30 patient limit may seek a waiver per established protocols.
  • The exemption applies only to the prescription of Schedule III, IV, and V drugs or combinations of such drugs, covered under the CSA, such as buprenorphine. It does not apply to the prescribing, dispensing, or the use of Schedule II medications such as methadone for the treatment of opioid use disorders.
  • Before treating patients with buprenorphine for opioid use disorder, practitioners are required to obtain a waiver under the CSA by submitting a Notice of Intent to SAMHSA under established protocols. Learn more about becoming a waivered practitioner here..

Practitioners may find more information about the exemption in HHS's Quick Start Guide (PDF | 1.5 MB) and HHS's FAQs.

Read HHS's press release about the new practice guidelines here.

Office-Based Buprenorphine Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder (Online + Live Discussion Panel)

APA, in collaboration with the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP), offers CME-accredited X-license waiver trainings for those seeking Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) / Buprenorphine-related CME through the Providers Clinical Support System (PCSS). This training offers our signature online waiver training course paired with a live discussion panel led by field experts for a more interactive learning experience. The course is available from Monday, April 5, 2021, to Friday, April 23, 2021.

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Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) Booster Activity

Using a question-based format, participants receive one multiple-choice question, by email, every other day. The activity consists of 25 questions over 60 days. Questions address the diagnosis, treatment, and longitudinal care of patients with Opioid Use Disorders.

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Model Curriculum in Substance Use Disorders

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and APA have developed educational activities that enable learners to manage psychoactive substance intoxication associated withdrawal and evidence-based psychotherapy and psychosocial interventions that include cognitive behavioral therapy and motivational interviewing.

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