Guidance for Opioid Treatment Programs

This information can change, please double-check sources for information, and continue to monitor sources or back here for updates.

John W. McIlveen, Ph.D., LMHC, Oregon State Opioid Treatment Authority, has provided guidance for Opioid Treatment Programs (OTP) to reduce potential spread of COVID-19 in their facilities. In addition to following the CDC guidance for infection prevention and transmission, facilities must:

  • Require 100% screening of all individuals who are allowed to enter facilities;
    • Screening means: the evaluation by facility staff of every individual entering the facility to identify any individuals who have signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection.
    • Screening criteria include any of the following signs or symptoms: fever, cough or shortness of breath.
    • If a client or vendor has any of the signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection, they must:
      • Limit their movement within the facility to a separate room other than the dispensary or lobby.
      • OTP staff must dose clients in closed rooms, as needed.
      • Limit surfaces touched.
      • If available, use appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) – gloves, gown and surgical mask. No client will be turned away if these items are not available, but these practices are strongly encouraged.
      • Limit physical contact with other clients, vendors and staff.
  • Document screening procedures for all clients who enter facilities.
    • All screenings must be documented via a form and logged. The log is for the sole purpose in assisting Public Health in preventing the further transmission of COVID-19.
  • Limit group activities to the extent possible. Adhere to social distancing recommendations where group activities occur, including allowing 6 feet between group participants.
  • Conduct interviews and meetings with clients by telephone or use face-to-face telehealth methods, as much as possible. SAMSHA has approved several such methods. See telemedicine information here: https://www.samhsa.gov/medication-assisted-treatment

Additional information is included in the guidance letter to OTP facilities.