The DATA 2000 Act allowed approved physicians to treat 30 patients with opioid addiction using buprenorphine, and up to 100 patients following an approved application to SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).
The 100 patient limit was recently raised to 275 patients out of a necessity for physicians to treat more people in response to the rising American opioid addiction crisis. Those doctors eligible for the 275 patient limit must have received a waiver to treat 100 patients for at least one year. In order to apply for the 275 patient limit, physicians must provide their DEA number, State medical license number, and buprenorphine training certificate information.
Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and Physician Assistants (PAs) can now receive training and become approved to write prescriptions for buprenorphine-based products. This expansion of buprenorphine availability will help those struggling with addiction to more readily find a provider in their community who is able to treat their opioid dependency.