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FDA's Gottlieb calls for greater use of medication-assisted treatment to fight opioid epidemic

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FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb told a U.S. House committee on Wednesday that his agency is looking at ways to broaden the use of medication-assisted treatment, or the use of drugs such as methadone and buprenorphine, in conjunction with counseling, to help people overcome addiction to opioids.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb told a U.S. House committee on Wednesday that his agency is looking at ways to broaden the use of medication-assisted treatment, or the use of drugs such as methadone and buprenorphine, in conjunction with counseling, to help people overcome addiction to opioids. Gottlieb said the agency will issue new guidance to manufacturers to promote the development of novel therapies, including ones that treat a wider range of symptoms. A report by the Pew Charitable Trusts concluded last year that medication-assisted treatment is the most effective way to deal with opioid use disorder, far superior to behavioral interventions or medication alone. Compared with non-drug approaches, medication-assisted treatment reduces illicit opioid use and decreases fatal overdoses, the report said. But the treatment often is unavailable because of a lack of programs to help people with opioid problems. On Wednesday, Gottlieb also said the agency is planning a meeting on the benefits of expanded addiction treatment at the broader "population level." He said the FDA is conducting research that would lead to a label indication calling for such treatment for everyone who has an overdose, based on data showing a reduction in death at a community level.

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2017/10/25/fdas-gottlieb-calls-for-greater-use-of-medication-assisted-treatment-to-fight-opioid-epidemic/?utm_term=.44567534518c

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