Treatment for opioid use disorder is a process that should be carefully managed by a patient and their health care team. This is especially true for women who are pregnant or have newborn children. Fortunately, medication-assisted treatment can be provided during pregnancy and after childbirth and this is often the safest treatment with the best outcome for baby and mother. To assist patients and care provides with learning about options and planning the treatment that is best for other and baby, SAMHSA has published Healthy Pregnancy Healthy Baby fact sheets.
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Prevention & Treatment
I often found that my psychiatric practice’s patients diagnosed with depression, bipolar disorder or another mental illness also were living with untreated drug or alcohol problems.
The presence of both substance abuse and mental illness is known as a co-occurring disorder. Left untreated, this condition poses a serious threat to an individual’s quality of life, including increased risk of family problems, frequent drug relapse, numerous hospitalizations, unemployment, homelessness, serious physical illness and death.
In the United States, the profile of opioid misuse and opioid use disorder is changing. Nonmedical use of prescription opioids has become as significant a problem as heroin use. In 2013, approximately 4.5 million people reported nonmedical use of prescription pain relievers in the past month and 289,000 reported use of heroin in the past month. Despite the enormity of the problem, the vast majority of people with an opioid use disorder do not receive medication-assisted treatment (MAT) because of limited treatment capacity, financial obstacles, social bias, and other barriers to care.
By: Pamela S. Hyde, J.D., Administrator, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
I, and everyone at SAMHSA, will certainly miss the visionary, principled, and pragmatic leadership of Dr. H. Westley Clark, who recently retired after 16 years as the Director of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), and more than 30 years in the federal government.
SAMHSA is looking for your comments on how to improve mental health care in our communities. Register today for our upcoming listening session. America is facing a critical need for mental health services. Over 9 million adults in the United States are living with a serious mental illness, and 1 in 5 children have an identified mental health disorder.
This week, SAMHSA released its strategic plan for the next four years, Leading Change 2.0: Advancing the Behavioral Health of the Nation 2015 – 2018 (Leading Change 2.0).