In an effort to
reduce the potential to acquire and/or spread COVID-19, the Indiana Division
of Mental Health and Addiction, with support from Overdose Lifeline, will
supply opioid treatment programs with lockboxes and naloxone kits.
The lockboxes will
enable Hoosiers, who are stable in their treatment of opioid use disorder,
the ability to reduce their number of trips and time spent at an OTP to
receive their daily dose of methadone.
OTPs are the only
locations in the state with the authority to dispense methadone for
treatment of opioid use disorder. Prior to this public health emergency, the
majority of patients were required to visit the clinic every day for their
medication. Every day, OTPs serve more than 10,000 Hoosiers in recovery from
opioid use disorder with methadone, evidence-based therapies and other
The lockboxes will
secure take-home doses of methadone for people in treatment and help to
reduce their exposure to COVID-19. The lockboxes will be issued in full
accordance with Indiana Code for self-administered medication. The
additional flexibility for OTPs and their patients is in full accordance
with recent emergency guidance issued by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental
Health Services Administration.
that we take any and all measures necessary to support Hoosiers in achieving
or maintaining optimal health and well-being during the global pandemic,”
said Jennifer Sullivan, M.D., M.P.H., secretary of the Indiana Family and
Social Services Administration, the agency which houses DMHA. “Urging
Hoosiers to isolate themselves from each other is necessary, but for some it
could bring unique health risks. For our fellow Hoosiers recovering from
opioid use disorder, this innovative approach to delivering the medications
they need daily will support them in their recovery while also helping
contain the spread of COVID-19.”
Naloxone will be
issued with the lockboxes as a precautionary method. Naloxone is a
life-saving antidote for a person experiencing an opioid overdose. State law
requires anyone administering naloxone to call 9-1-1.
initiative will be paid for utilizing state targeted response funds provided
by the federal government via SAMHSA.