How to Find Physician Training on Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Dependency

Research has shown that medication-assisted treatment (MAT) – a combination of medication and psychosocial support such as counseling or evidence-based behavioral therapy – can be effective in treating opioid dependency.

Prescription-Bottles-pills-webThe Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 enables physicians to qualify to treat opioid dependency with buprenorphine products if they are:

  • Licensed under state law
  • Registered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to dispense controlled substances
  • Treating no more than 30 patients at a time within the first year
  • Qualified by training and/or certification

Physicians can complete an eight-hour training to qualify for a waiver to prescribe and dispense buprenorphine. They must also be able to refer patients to counseling and other services.

MAT Training Opportunities

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), in collaboration with Geisinger Health, is offering a Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Course that provides the required education needed to obtain the waiver to prescribe buprenorphine. The physician course is an 8-hour blended course combining 4 hours of online learning followed by 4 hours of live learning:

Location: Henry Hood Center for Health Research, Danville, Pa.
Date: Saturday, April 7, 2018; 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: $20 (includes food and beverages)
Register Here

If you’re unable to attend this live course, check out these other educational opportunities for physicians supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Training options include a course (The Providers Clinical Support System for MAT Self Study at the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine) that blends a live 4.25 webinar session with a 3.75 hour online session.

Nurse practitioners and physician assistants can also apply for an MAT waiver if they meet requirements, including 24 hours of training. Get details here.

Additional Resources

SAMHSA offers a variety of MAT resources, including:

For Pennsylvania Medical Society resources on the opioid abuse crisis, visit

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