Opioid Treatment Programs: A Key Treatment System Component

A registered nurse at a clinic in Maine dispenses methadone at a dosing window. Jack Milton Portland Press Herald via Getty Images

The most effective treatments for opioid use disorder (OUD) are the three prescription medications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone—that are proved to increase a patient’s treatment retention and reduce illicit use and the risk of overdose.1 The only facilities legally able to offer all three medications are opioid treatment programs (OTPs), a critical component of the U.S. substance use treatment system that are regulated by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), as well as state agencies, and are certified to administer any FDA-approved medication for the treatment of OUD.2