Telemedicine to Help Combat Opioid Abuse

Technology brings education and specialty expertise to rural areas in need

Telemedicine has proven to be useful in providing patients with increased convenience, speed, and ease of access, and now it may be part of the solution to managing opioid abuse. As the nation focuses on this important and widespread issue, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is launching a project to examine the benefits of telemedicine in helping rural providers treat these populations. Rural clinicians will receive special education on new treatments and guidelines, such as telepsychiatry and peer teleconsults. This increased access is particularly relevant for rural populations, which are disproportionately affected by opioid and other substance misuse.

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