Pilot randomized controlled trial of a hospital-based substance use treatment and recovery team (START) to improve initiation of medication for alcohol or opioid use disorder and linkage to follow-up care

J Subst Use Addict Treat. 2023 Jul;150:209063. doi: 10.1016/j.josat.2023.209063. Epub 2023 May 6.

Abstract

Objectives: We conducted a pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) to explore whether a hospital inpatient addiction consult team (Substance Use Treatment and Recovery Team [START]) based on collaborative care was feasible, acceptable to patients, and whether it could improve uptake of medication in the hospital and linkage to care after discharge, as well as reduce substance use and hospital readmission. The START consisted of an addiction medicine specialist and care manager who implemented a motivational and discharge planning intervention.

Methods: We randomized inpatients age ≥ 18 with a probable alcohol or opioid use disorder to receive START or usual care. We assessed feasibility and acceptability of START and the RCT, and we conducted an intent-to-treat analysis on data from the electronic medical record and patient interviews at baseline and 1-month postdischarge. The study compared RCT outcomes (medication for alcohol or opioid use disorder, linkage to follow-up care after discharge, substance use, hospital readmission) between arms by fitting logistic and linear regression models.

Findings: Of 38 START patients, 97 % met with the addiction medicine specialist and care manager; 89 % received ≥8 of 10 intervention components. All patients receiving START found it to be somewhat or very acceptable. START patients had higher odds of initiating medication during the inpatient stay (OR 6.26, 95 % CI = 2.38-16.48, p < .001) and being linked to follow-up care (OR 5.76, 95 % CI = 1.86-17.86, p < .01) compared to usual care patients (N = 50). The study found no significant differences between groups in drinking or opioid use; patients in both groups reported using fewer substances at the 1-month follow-up.

Conclusions: Pilot data suggest START and RCT implementation are feasible and acceptable and that START may facilitate medication initiation and linkage to follow-up for inpatients with an alcohol or opioid use disorder. A larger trial should assess effectiveness, covariates, and moderators of intervention effects.

Keywords: Addiction consult team; Collaborative care; Inpatient; Linkage to follow-up; Medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD); Opioid use disorder (OUD).

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Aftercare
  • Behavior, Addictive*
  • Ethanol
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Opioid-Related Disorders* / drug therapy
  • Pilot Projects

Substances

  • Ethanol