Preparing Your Office for Opioid Treatment
A final step should be preparing your office, including staff members, to begin office-based opioid treatment (OBOT). These tasks should include:
- Establishing billing protocols: Decide if you will accept insurance or Medicaid coverage, run as a fee-for-service practice only, or a combination of both. Determine fees and payment plans and policies.
- Determine your recordkeeping practices: Determine how you will store buprenorphine prescribing records, both for your own use as well as in case of a DEA site visit. Remember that these records should be stored at your DEA registered address.
- Train staff: Both clinical and administrative staff will need to be trained on various aspects of OBOT. non-physician clinicians may benefit from taking a buprenorphine training program, even though they can not prescribe buprenorphine.
- Assemble practice and patient education forms: There are a number of existing forms, many of which have been included in this activity, which you can use in practice. Visit our Resource Center (http://www.buppractice.com/resources) to review or access all of these forms.
In the course of your staff trainings, try to cover the following topics:
- Addiction is a chronic medical illness, not a character flaw or weakness of will, and can be treated successfully
- The treatment philosophy your practice espouses Substance abuse screening skills
- Proper record keeping and compliance with confidentiality legislation
- Appropriate interaction with patients and how to handle negative situations that may arise
- Knowledge of other services and referral options
The setting and tone of the trainings and the methods of information delivery will influence learning. Keep the following principles in mind:
- Design hands-on activities that stress experience. Focus on skills by using role-playing, for example. This will be more effective for staff than simply being lectured. Start the training with a participatory activity and intersperse these activities throughout the training to keep attention levels high.
- Notice how the staff members learn, and try to do more things that enhance their learning.
- Provide additional resources so that learning can continue after training is complete.