Percentage of Overdose Deaths Involving Methadone Declined Between January 2019 and August 2021

The percentage of methadone-involved overdose deaths relative to all drug overdose deaths declined from January 2019 to August 2021, according to a new study. Access to methadone, a medication to treat opioid use disorder, was expanded at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic to allow more patients to take home doses, rather than visit a clinic daily. These data indicate that broader access to treatment was not associated with harms. While drug overdose deaths both with and without methadone increased in the month of March 2020, overdose deaths that did not involve methadone continued to increase in the months after the policy changes, while overdose deaths involving methadone held steady.

Learn more: https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/percentage-overdose-deaths-involving-methadone-declined-between-january-2019-august-2021

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