Dr. Viviana Horigian, associate professor of public health and researcher at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, received a Clinical Trials Network grant that supported the launch of the Office-Based Addiction Treatment (OBAT) program. The program, located in primary care clinics at the University of Miami Health System (UHealth), offers medication-assisted treatment, an approach that has been the most effective in treating opioid addictions.
In an interview with InventUM, Dr. Horigian, who is also director of public health education at the University of Miami Department of Public Health Sciences, said, “Patients can now be seen in a primary care setting that offers state-of-the-art medical treatment rather than going to a specialized substance-abuse facility. It is more convenient for patients and removes the potential stigma when dealing with an opioid addiction.”
The OBAT program at UHealth includes a team of medical professionals that are specialized in the treatment of opiate use disorder. Under the supervision and guidance of a trained physician and a nurse care manager, a patient’s opiate use disorder is overseen in the same way other chronic health conditions are in primary care, such as diabetes and high cholesterol.
“Our program, which is supported by a federal grant, is designed to meet an important public health need in our community,” Dr. Horigian said in the interview. “Nationally, only 10 percent of individuals with opioid use disorder are receiving treatment, so increasing access through primary care clinics is an important step forward in addressing the opioid epidemic.”
More information on the OBAT programTags: Friday Letter Submission, Publish on June 14