Purpose of Review
This review aims to (1) conceptualize the complexity of the opioid use disorder epidemic using a conceptual model grounded in the disease continuum and corresponding levels of prevention and (2) summarize a select set of interventions for the prevention and treatment of opioid use disorder.
Epidemiologic data indicate non-medical prescription and illicit opioid use have reached unprecedented levels, fueling an opioid use disorder epidemic in the USA. A problem of this magnitude is rooted in multiple supply- and demand-side drivers, the combined effect of which outweighs current prevention and treatment efforts. Multiple primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention interventions, both evidence-informed and evidence-based, are available to address each point along the disease continuum—non-use, initiation, dependence, addiction, and death.
If interventions grounded in the best available evidence are disseminated and implemented across the disease continuum in a coordinated and collaborative manner, public health systems could be increasingly effective in responding to the epidemic.
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The work was supported in part by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under award R24DA036409. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of NIH.
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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
This article is part of the Topical Collection on The Global Epidemic
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Mathis, S.M., Hagemeier, N., Hagaman, A. et al. A Dissemination and Implementation Science Approach to the Epidemic of Opioid Use Disorder in the United States. Curr HIV/AIDS Rep 15, 359–370 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11904-018-0409-9
- Opioid use disorder
- Non-medical use
- Implementation science