New Jersey is 1st state to let paramedics administer buprenorphine

New Jersey rolled out a first-of-its-kind program that seeks to provide overdose victims with medication-assisted treatment sooner, according to STAT.

Through the new model, paramedics will administer the medication-assisted therapy buprenorphine to patients right after an overdose.

Typically, clinicians must undergo a separate training course before they can prescribe buprenorphine. However, New Jersey Health Commissioner Shereef Elnahal, MD, authorized 1,900 paramedics across 21 mobile intensive care units in the state to carry the medication.

The paramedics must receive permission from the emergency physician managing their unit before giving a patient buprenorphine. The physician must also be certified to prescribe the drug.

The program aims to treat withdrawal symptoms that can often occur after an overdose victim is revived. It also seeks to more quickly connect patients with long-term treatment.

To read STAT's full report, click here.

More articles on opioids:

Addressing the national opioid epidemic through care collaboration
Many surgeons overprescribed opioids as overdose rates soared, KHN analysis finds
FDA proposes more stringent rules for opioid approval: 4 things to know

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