LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - The Oklahoma Health Care Authority has received federal approval to cover medical assisted treatment for opioid addiction.
State Medicaid Director, Traylor Rains says Oklahoma’s Healthcare Authority requested Medicaid coverage for medical assisted treatment of opioid addiction last year due to the states high ranking in Opioid addiction.
He says the expansion will allow more people to not only seek treatment but to recover faster.
The Oklahoma Health Care Authority announced today that it is the first Medicaid program in the nation to cover medical assisted treatment of opioid use disorder.
State Medicaid Director, Traylor Rains says the expansion goes into effect immediately and will reimburse providers for services that were rendered as far back as October of 2020.
“These providers can seek and contract with the healthcare authority directly which they previously had not been able to and get reimbursed for the services they provide which includes therapy, case management support, peer recovery as well as the medications themselves,” Rains said.
He says the expansion will immediately impact those seeking treatment who are covered by Medicaid and will help even more when Medicaid expands this summer.
“We do estimate that initially this will impact 3,000 to 3500 individuals currently receiving this care that are Medicaid members this number will go up July 1 whenever we implement Medicaid expansion,” Rains said.
Lawton based substance abuse counselor, Scott Hammonds says the expansion will make all the difference for people who need medical assisted treatment in Lawton where there are currently no providers who offer it.
“In Lawton and the surrounding area there is no available resource in this area that is why it would be so important to get these services in the Lawton area,” Hammonds said.
He says while Roadback, does not currently provide opioid addicted patients treatment through medications like buprenorphine or methadone, the expansion means that it can begin to do so within the next few months.
“We’ll definitely be excited to get some new services started and also to provide much needed resources to the community,” Hammonds said.
If you would like more information you can visit Soonercare’s online portal.