Resource Details


Addressing the Opioid Crisis
Medication-Assisted Treatment at Health Care for the Homeless Programs

Resource Topic: Emerging Issues, Clinical Issues, Special and Vulnerable Populations

Resource Subtopic: Community, Health, and Housing Partnerships.

Keywords: Opioids, Persons Experiencing Homelessness.

Year Developed: 2019

Resource Type: Publication

Primary Audience: Administrative Staff C-Suite (CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, COOs, CMOs, etc)
Secondary Audience: Clinicians

Language: English

Developed by: National Health Care for the Homeless Council (See other resources developed by this organization).

Resource Summary: This paper outlines strategies for how Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) programs can start or expand medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services to address the opioid epidemic. While HCH programs serve only four percent of all health center patients nationally, they are responsible for serving nearly 40 percent of all patients receiving MAT.

Resource Details: Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) programs, a subset of community health centers that receive special populations funding to address the specific needs of vulnerable and medically complex patients, play a significant role in addressing the opioid epidemic by providing medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT, which combines one of three medications (methadone, buprenorphine, or naltrexone) with behavioral therapies, is the standard of care for opioid use disorder (OUD). This brief presents findings from an analysis of health center data on the provision of buprenorphine-based MAT, as well as interviews with providers and administrators from 12 HCH programs about strategies they adopted to implement MAT programs. Key findings include:

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $6,375,000 with 0 percentage financed with non-governmental sources. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit