Across the United States, drug usage and overdoses are still a problem for public health. Despite overdose deaths being more common in urban than rural locations, both groups have seen a noticeable rise in recent years
Due to stigma and regulatory barriers, rural regions have difficulty offering Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) to patients with opioid use disorder (OUD). However, the expansion of MAT in rural communities has been increasing since the Covid-19 Pandemic, when many healthcare providers had to quickly adopt digital technology to facilitate remote care including medication monitoring for people with OUD. After 2020, telemedicine became an essential part of care, which has helped the rural population gain better access to treatment. Telehealth has also allowed providers to expand treatment to more patients that they typically would not be able to help.
Help is available. To assist in expanding MAT treatment, HRSA created the Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) in 2019 aiming to decrease SUD and OUD in rural communities. The RCORP-Medication Assisted Treatment Expansion (RCORP-MAT Expansion) intends to grow the number of locations where people with OUD who live in rural areas can access evidence-based care. In 2022, HRSA awarded over $10 million to 11 grantees to keep expanding MAT treatment in rural areas.
Atadas, Inc. supports rural clinics by providing tools for patient engagement and retention, diversion control, and treatment gap analysis for quality of care and improved outcome objectives. The Atadas AddMedPro patient mobile app has many features designed to give patients easier access to treatment. Some of the features in the AddMedPro Mobile platform include secure messaging, appointment scheduling, telemedicine visits, medication reminders, logging medication dosage, ePill Counts, eDrug Screens, and logging behavioral health meetings.