Implementation of a comprehensive hospitalist-led initiative to improve care for patients with opioid use disorder.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: As opioid-related hospitalizations rise, hospitals must be prepared to evaluate and treat patients with opioid use disorder (OUD). We implemented a hospitalist-led program, Project Caring for patients with Opioid Misuse through Evidence-based Treatment (COMET) to address gaps in care for hospitalized patients with OUD. OBJECTIVE: Implement evidence-based treatment for inpatients with OUD and refer to postdischarge care. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Project COMET launched in July 2019 at Duke University Hospital (DUH), an academic medical center in Durham, NC. INTERVENTION, MAIN OUTCOMES, AND MEASURES: We engaged key stakeholders, performed a needs assessment, and secured health system funding. We developed protocols to standardize OUD treatment and employed a social worker to facilitate postdischarge care. Electronic health records were utilized for data analysis. RESULTS: COMET evaluated 512 patients for OUD during their index hospitalization from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2021. Seventy-one percent of patients received medication for OUD (MOUD) during admission. Of those who received buprenorphine during admission, 64% received a discharge prescription. Of those who received methadone during admission, 83% of eligible patients were connected to a methadone clinic. Among all patients at DUH with OUD, MOUD use during hospitalization and at discharge increased in the post-COMET period compared to the pre-COMET period (p < .001 for both). CONCLUSION: Our program is one of the first to demonstrate successful implementation of a hospitalist-led, comprehensive approach to caring for hospitalized patients with OUD and can serve as an example to other institutions seeking to implement life-saving, evidence-based treatment in this population.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Clifton, D; Ivey, N; Poley, S; O'Regan, A; Raman, SR; Frascino, N; Hamilton, S; Setji, N

Published Date

  • June 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 17 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 427 - 436

PubMed ID

  • 35535562

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9321616

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1553-5606

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/jhm.12837


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States