Substance misuse disorders, from alcohol to opioids to stimulants, remain a growing public health issue in the United States. During the COVID-19 public health emergency, many locations saw an increase in drug use and overdoses. Law enforcement, lawmakers, healthcare providers, nonprofits, and concerned citizens have been attempting to curb this problem at all levels.
Many abused substances, such as opioid pain relievers and stimulants for attention disorders, are legally prescribed. Because these medications come with such a high risk of abuse and addiction, it is important for prescribers to fully understand the risks involved and closely monitor their use.
Recent legislative changes have created new training requirements for prescribers who are registered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Make sure you are prepared to meet these requirements before the deadline!
What additional training is required?
Starting June 27, 2023, practitioners who prescribe controlled substances and are registered with the DEA must complete at least 8 hours of training on opioid or other substance use disorders (SUDs). These training requirements, however, do not apply to providers who only practice veterinary medicine. This is part of the “Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023,” or the Medication Access and Training Expansion Act.
The deadline for meeting this requirement is the date of your next scheduled DEA registration submission that falls on or after June 27, 2023. This applies whether you are registering for the first time or renewing your registration.
You will need to check a box on your online DEA registration form affirming that you met the new training requirements. This is a one-time requirement, so you won’t have to repeat it for future registrations.
More details can be found in a PDF version of a DEA letter sent to registered practitioners.
How do you meet training requirements?
There are several ways to meet these training requirements:
- A provider can obtain 8 hours of training in SUD from one of more than a dozen approved organizations. Check out the full organization list from SAMHSA.
- Providers can become board-certified in addiction medicine or addiction psychiatry from the American Board of Medical Specialties, American Board of Addiction Medicine, or the American Osteopathic Association.
- Within 5 years, the provider can graduate in good standing from a U.S. medical, advanced practice nursing, or physician assistant school. This education must include successful completion of a SUD curriculum of at least 8 hours. The curriculum must address the treatment and management of patients with opioid use disorder and other SUDs, including the appropriate use of FDA-approved drugs for treating SUD.
SAMHSA notes that prescribers do not have to complete the 8 hours of training all at once. You can accumulate them with CME hours, provided the training is done through an approved organization. This training may include classroom education, seminars at professional society meetings, or virtual options.
Section 1262 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 eliminated the DATA Waiver (also known as X-Waiver) Requirement to prescribe buprenorphine for opioid use disorder. However, if you already took the training to meet the requirements of the DATA-2000 waiver, that still counts toward your 8 hours.
Keeping up with addiction treatment requirements can take a lot of time for your behavioral health practice. BestNotes EHR was designed so you can help your clients with less frustration and lower costs. Contact us today to learn more!