Cost-Effectiveness in the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder
On Friday, October 4, 2019, I gave a talk on the cost-effectiveness of opioid use disorder treatment and testing at Essentials of Addiction Medicine in Durham, NC for the Governors Institute. Spoiler Alert: OTP is usually the most cost-effective way to have opioid use disorder treated, especially for patients who are underinsured or uninsured and with the state grant funding we have at the Morse Clinics. After my talk, I was chatting with Pollen with the Governors Institute. Dr. James Groce, a psychiatrist who has worked with Southlight for over 40 years, joined our conversation. I worked with Dr. Groce when I was Southlight’s medical director from 2007-2012. He told me, “Eric, I just wanted to say that for the past 10 years or so, no one person has fought this opioid epidemic more successfully than you have.” We went on to reminisce. After we were done, Pollen mentioned that it was quite the compliment. It was. It got me thinking. In the past 10 years, between the Morse Clinics and Carolina Performance, every day, I have personally treated thousands of people suffering with opioid use disorder, mentored other physicians, PAs and NPs treating many more, and advocated in North Carolina and Washington, DC to help make the treatment of opioid use disorder more accessible, more effective., and better funded. I have opened 8 OTPs myself and assisted others in opening more. It has not been easy. I have met some adversity professionally, personally and business-wise. I will continue to do this work tirelessly until I can no longer do so. I thank everyone who has helped me – particularly my colleagues at the Morse Clinics and Carolina Performance – past and present.