The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has proposed a rule that would make it easier for behavioral health providers to remotely provide medication-assisted treatment for opioid-use disorder (OUD).
The proposal would allow narcotic treatment programs to dispense methadone remotely using mobile units without requiring them to get separate registration to do so.
Currently, providers have to get unique registration for to each place they dispense controlled substances. However, if the proposed rule passes, a single registration process will allow them to offer both office-based and remote treatment.
By streamlining the registration process, the DEA hopes to make it easier for people with OUD to get the treatment they need.
In a press release announcing the news, the DEA called the move an “important step to improve access to medication-assisted treatment, especially in rural areas.” Meanwhile, the National Council for Behavioral Health called lauded the proposed rule as a “major, long-awaited step from advocates in the field.”
Providers have until April 27 to submit comments on the rule.