Every day, 128 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The misuse of and addiction to opioids—including prescription pain relievers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl—is a national crisis. Between 2003 and 2018, AIR supported the information management and data analytic needs of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) related to certification of opioid treatment programs (OTPs).
To assist SAMHSA in monitoring compliance of the almost 1,600 OTPs nationwide, AIR designed and maintained a web-based automated data processing application and backend database to provide accurate and timely information about an OTP’s certification and accreditation status; accreditation survey findings; and any exemptions to regulatory requirements. AIR also maintained up-to-date and accurate information for OTP sponsors, directors, and medical directors; the physical locations of facilities and associated medical units; and other administrative information, such as Drug Enforcement Administration and national provider identification numbers. AIR oversaw the evolution of technology and processes, from paper to electronic submissions, integrating new modules and features that directly address and support SAMHSA’s regulatory compliance monitoring role. Along the way, AIR introduced valuable improvements and efficiencies and gained deep knowledge of the field while engaging stakeholders in monitoring and improving opioid treatment.