An ED visit from someone with opioid use disorder is an opportunity to put that person in treatment. People do not present to the ED when things are going well; they present at times of crisis. Sometimes, in that crisis, there is a wakeup. If the system offers some approaches and a treatment pathway, then everybody benefits.
Regardless of whether they know it, many case managers are faced with patients and clients each day who are struggling with opioid use disorder (OUD). As rates of OUD continue to increase, it is essential for case managers to hone their skills of confidently recognizing and addressing the disorder.
While frontline providers have their hands full with COVID-19, overdose deaths are surging across the country. Some experts argue now is the perfect time to implement needed reforms in care for patients with opioid use disorder. In particular, they say it is time to fully leverage emergency departments in the quest to initiate these patients on treatment and connect them with ongoing care.