ASAM supports a wide variety of measures to prevent and research substance-related problems.

Other Addiction Policy Areas

ASAM is committed to increasing access to and improving the quality of evidence-based addiction prevention services. ASAM supports a wide variety of measures to prevent substance-related problems, understanding that carefully planned prevention measures can reduce the initiation of substance use. Additionally, ASAM advocates for a robust research agenda informed by patient experience and clinical needs. Specific research priorities include effective prevention programs and pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for addiction and improved medical treatments for stimulant use disorder.

Advocacy Action

ASAM Teams up with the AMA, Shatterproof to Educate Prescribers and Medical Students About Treating Opioid Use Disorder with Buprenorphine

July 29, 2021

New online training module will expand on federal guidance for prescribing buprenorphine for opioid use disorder and help America’s clinicians and medical students at a critical juncture in the country’s overdose epidemic


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Rockville, MD - The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) today announced the launch of a new, free, one-hour, online training module designed to educate medical professionals and students about prescribing buprenorphine to patients with opioid use disorder (OUD). The Buprenorphine Mini-Course: Building on Federal Prescribing Guidance module, which is presented by ASAM in collaboration with the American Medical Association (AMA) and Shatterproof, will help strengthen America’s medical response to OUD and increase access to life-saving medications at a time when the United States is facing a record level of drug overdose deaths.


The brief training module released today is designed to expand on the recently released Buprenorphine Quick Start Guide developed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).  The quick start guide was released in conjunction with Practice Guidelines for the Administration of Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Use Disorder issued by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Under the practice guidelines, which remove some of the often-cited barriers associated with the “x-waiver” to prescribe buprenorphine in-office for the treatment of OUD, eligible physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, certified registered nurse anesthetists and certified nurse midwives are exempt from federal certification requirements related to training, counseling, and other ancillary services that are part of the process for obtaining a waiver to treat up to 30 patients with buprenorphine, one of three medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat OUD.


Utilizing the chronic care framework of addiction treatment, the one-hour, fully online module, offers practical considerations for buprenorphine initiation, dosing, and ongoing patient management to prescribers seeking to initiate buprenorphine for the treatment of OUD. In addition, through interactive and application-focused learning, participants will explore the core principles of OUD treatment and the importance of language when treating patients with this chronic disease.


“ASAM is proud to work with the AMA and Shatterproof in launching this new training module, which will educate prescribers who are new to employing buprenorphine in the treatment of OUD,” said William F. Haning, MD, DLFAPA, DFASAM, president of ASAM. “With a tragic record of over 93,000 drug overdose deaths estimated in 2020, it is vital for medical professionals across disciplines and settings to understand and implement best practices for treating patients with addiction.  In launching this important training module one month before Overdose Awareness Day on August 31, our organizations hope to save more lives.”


“Enhanced education and training is central to the actions that physicians must take to help end the epidemic,” said AMA President Gerald Harmon, MD. “HHS took a key step to remove some of the barriers for treating patients with OUD. We’re proud to join ASAM and Shatterproof in supporting this new training module; and now the AMA strongly encourages physicians and other qualified health care professionals to take advantage of this new educational opportunity to put training into clinical practice.”


“It is critical that we educate more medical professionals earlier in their training if we hope to reverse the addiction crisis,” said Gary Mendell, Shatterproof Founder & CEO.  “This collaboration with ASAM and AMA will provide a training module for professionals and students, alike, who want to learn about addiction and prescribe buprenorphine.  Buprenorphine is highly effective at treating OUD, preventing overdoses, and helping patients recover long-term. But fewer than half of patients with OUD currently receive this care, and Shatterproof’s research has found that only 5.7% of America’s prescribers are waivered to prescribe buprenorphine. Through this training module, Shatterproof can play a part with these key leaders in the field, ASAM and AMA, in empowering more providers to save the lives of patients in dire need.”


ASAM will provide CME credit upon completion of the training module. The training module will be available for free in the ASAM e-Learning Center and the AMA Ed Hub for the duration of the CME approval period (3 years). Additionally, ASAM is offering its eight-hour, fully online Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Course in the ASAM e-Learning Center for free through December 31, 2021.  ASAM’s Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Course provides eight hours of required education to qualify for a waiver to prescribe buprenorphine for OUD to more than 30 patients in an office-based setting.


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About the American Society of Addiction Medicine 

The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), founded in 1954, is a professional medical society representing over 6,600 physicians, clinicians and associated professionals in the field of addiction medicine. ASAM is dedicated to increasing access and improving the quality of addiction treatment, educating physicians and the public, supporting research and prevention, and promoting the appropriate role of physicians in the care of patients with addiction. For more information, visit

About the American Medical Association

The American Medical Association is the physicians’ powerful ally in patient care. As the only medical association that convenes 190+ state and specialty medical societies and other critical stakeholders, the AMA represents physicians with a unified voice to all key players in health care.  The AMA leverages its strength by removing the obstacles that interfere with patient care, leading the charge to prevent chronic disease and confront public health crises and, driving the future of medicine to tackle the biggest challenges in health care.

About Shatterproof

Shatterproof is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to reversing the addiction crisis in the United States. Shatterproof harnesses the models of business, the rigor of science and the power of a national movement to create change and save lives through three pillars of work: revolutionizing the addiction treatment system, breaking down addiction-related stigmas and supporting and empowering our communities. To learn more visit


Media Contact

Rebecca Reid


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