San Antonio Express-News just published a comprehensive story on medically assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid addiction, noting a lack of providers in the area and the stigmas around MAT.
The article begins with an anecdote about Jennifer Ramirez, who experienced substance use disorder beginning in her teenage years, and her path from taking methadone, then buprenorphine, throughout her recovery. At the public clinic where Ramirez received methadone, only five of the 620 patients receive buprenorphine. Ruben Gonzalez, the manager of treatment services at the clinic, explains:
That’s because the state only funds five “slots” for that particular medication. That imbalance reflects the nature of the clinic’s patient population, Gonzalez said: Most are long-term, heavy users of heroin.
The article identifies the small number of doctors who are certified to prescribe buprenorphine:
In Texas, as elsewhere in the nation, not many health-care providers have gone through the government-required training to obtain a “waiver” to prescribe it, experts say. Last year in Texas, fewer than 2,500 providers had taken the eight-hour workshop that lets them prescribe buprenorphine. In Bexar County, the number was 92.
Read the full story here, or search our directory to find doctors who prescribe buprenorphine in the San Antonio area.