Using Shared Medical Appointments to Increase Access to Buprenorphine Treatment

J Am Board Fam Med. 2015 Sep-Oct;28(5):676-7. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2015.05.150017.


Introduction: This study examines patient experiences with shared medical appointments for buprenorphine treatment at a safety net primary care clinic.

Methods: This is a cross-sectional observational study of 28 participants in a primary care buprenorphine shared medical appointments program.

Results: Participants reported appreciating the group visit format, gaining increased coping skills, and having more stable housing and less legal difficulty after starting the program.

Conclusion: The implementation of shared medical appointments for buprenorphine treatment benefits clinicians and patients. The nurse care manager and buprenorphine prescriber can efficiently attend to the clinical needs of multiple patients.

Keywords: Drug Abuse; Patient-centered Care; Substance Abuse.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Appointments and Schedules*
  • Buprenorphine / therapeutic use*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Services Accessibility / trends*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Massachusetts
  • Middle Aged
  • Narcotic Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Opiate Substitution Treatment / methods*
  • Opioid-Related Disorders / drug therapy*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Primary Health Care / methods*
  • Young Adult


  • Narcotic Antagonists
  • Buprenorphine