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A Novel Community-Based Buprenorphine Program: Client Description and Initial Outcomes

Daniels, Amy M. MHS, PhD; Salisbury-Afshar, Elizabeth MD, MPH; Hoffberg, Adam MHS; Agus, Deborah JD; Fingerhood, Michael I. MD, FACP

doi: 10.1097/ADM.0000000000000004
Original Research

The aims of this retrospective, descriptive study were to describe clients served by a buprenorphine program in a community-based recovery center and to present initial treatment outcomes. A record review was conducted for clients treated from July 2010 to August 2011. Client demographic, health, substance use, and treatment history data were abstracted from the records of the first 78 clients served. Buprenorphine and opiate use data were collected via urine toxicology reports, collected weekly among clients who remained enrolled in treatment. The average percentages of weeks spent opiate free and buprenorphine compliant were 83% (SD = 26%) and 95% (SD = 13%), respectively. When positive heroin toxicology and negative buprenorphine toxicology were replaced for the missing/unknown data, the average percentages of opiate-abstinent weeks and buprenorphine compliance were 60% (SD = 34%) and 74% (SD = 28%), respectively. Roughly half of all clients (49%) were successfully transitioned to continue treatment with buprenorphine in a primary care setting. Findings from this study demonstrate that buprenorphine treatment for opiate dependence can be incorporated into a community-based recovery center with high rates of opiate abstinence and treatment adherence.

From the Autism Speaks (AMD), New York; and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (ES-A, DA), Behavioral Health Leadership Institute (AH, DA), and Johns Hopkins University, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center (MIF), Baltimore, MD.

Send correspondence and reprint requests to Michael I. Fingerhood, MD, FACP, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, Johns Hopkins University, 4940 Eastern Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21224. E-mail:

Supported by the Open Society Institute.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

A limited portion of this manuscript was presented as an abstract at the 2011 annual meeting of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence.

Received December 12, 2012

Accepted October 10, 2013

© 2014 American Society of Addiction Medicine