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Blue Cross & Blue Shield launches medication-assisted treatment program with Roger Williams

From 2011 to 2016, overdose deaths increased by more than 90 percent in Rhode Island. To address this growing epidemic, Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) has partnered with the Addiction Services Center at Roger Williams Medical Center to deliver medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to Rhode Islanders struggling with opioid use disorder. The MAT program aims to provide evidence-based patient care by working to ensure timely, reliable access to clinical treatment and comprehensive services that focus on patients building recovery capital and improving their health outcomes.

Medication-assisted treatment is the use of medications, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, to provide a comprehensive approach to the treatment of opioid use disorder. Research shows that a combination of medication and therapy can successfully treat this disorder, and for some people struggling with addiction MAT can help sustain recovery.

“BCBSRI remains committed to the Governor’s Overdose Prevention and Intervention Task Force goal, shared by legislative leaders, to increase the number of people accessing MAT each year,” said Matt Collins, M.D., vice president of clinical integration at BCBSRI. “As part of this program, BCBSRI will collect critical metrics that can help drive positive health outcomes, including measuring access to treatment, services utilized, length of stay, engagement with primary care providers and successful completion of the MAT program, along with others.”

“Roger Williams Medical Center is excited to have partnered with BCBSRI to support patients in all stages of their recovery. We understand that patients engaged in MAT need flexibility in their treatment,” said Demetra Ouellette, president of Roger Williams. “Our partnership with BCBSRI has allowed us to advance our programming to meet the unique needs of patients in need of MAT. We look forward to reviewing our metrics to further build on the strengths of the program and team.”

MAT is primarily used for the treatment of addiction to opioids such as heroin and prescription pain relievers that contain opiates. Medications used in MAT are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and MAT programs are clinically driven and tailored to meet each patient’s needs. In addition to medication support, the MAT program will offer comprehensive clinical treatment to BCBSRI members. These comprehensive services include an initial clinical assessment and physician evaluation with ongoing care provided, individual and group counseling, and case management. All services are bundled into one monthly rate and would be charged in one monthly copayment for the member.

To learn more about the program, please call (401) 456-2362 or visit www.rwmc.org/services/addiction-services-center.