Wide variability in addiction medicine training and treatment have prevented far too many Americans from accessing evidence-based care for this chronic, treatable disease

Standardize It: Delivery of Addiction Care

Standardize adm care

ASAM advocates for the use of nationally recognized guidelines and standards for the treatment of addiction and the dissemination of competency-based addiction education for all healthcare professionals.

Advocacy Action

ASAM Supports Simultaneous Passage of the Medication Access and Training Expansion (MATE) Act and the Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment (MAT) Act

August 5, 2021


On August 5, ASAM sent a letter to senior Biden Administration officials reiterating its strong support for simultaneous passage of the bipartisan, bicameral Medication Access and Training Expansion (MATE) Act of 2021 (S. 2235/H.R. 2067) and the Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment (MAT) Act of 2021 (S. 445/H.R. 1384). The MATE Act would require most controlled medication prescribers registered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to have a baseline knowledge of how to identify, treat, and manage patients with substance use disorder (SUD). The MAT Act would eliminate what would then be a clearly redundant requirement that practitioners apply for a separate DEA waiver to prescribe buprenorphine for opioid use disorder (OUD), along with the x-waiver’s patient limits and extra regulatory burdens on buprenorphine for OUD.


ASAM’s letter emphasized that America faces a significant and worsening workforce shortage, both in the addiction space and in healthcare more broadly. By simultaneously passing the MATE and MAT Acts, Congress could dramatically expand the number of clinicians who are trained to treat addiction. It is particularly important that all prescribers of DEA-controlled medications receive training on addiction, as these healthcare professionals often interact with, and have opportunities to provide effective interventions for, individuals with SUD – opportunities to help that are often missed. 


Read the letter here.


Read the MATE Act here.


Read the MAT Act here.

National Initiatives

Modernizing 42 CFR Part 2

ASAM works to reform 42 CFR Part 2 to ensure that patient privacy is protected and clinicians are not subject onerous administrative burdens that delay or prevent the delivery of care. 


MATE Act of 2021

H.R. 2067, the MATE Act of 2021, would require controlled medication prescribers (excluding veterinarians and dentists) to attest – on either one initial or renewal DEA application – that they are an addiction specialist physician or have completed at least 8 hours of qualifying education on treating and managing patients with SUD from one or more accredited organizations or an accredited health professional school or residency program. This will help normalize and mainstream addiction medicine/psychiatry education. In addition, the bill would authorize federal grants to professional associations, universities, and other schools to develop and implement high-quality, comprehensive SUD curriculum for the purpose of integrating SUD education into the standard curriculum of relevant healthcare and health services education programs. Importantly, the legislation would not prevent prescribers from using the same education to satisfy both the one-time DEA registration requirement and for other purposes, such as satisfying state licensing requirements. 

Click here to read a Statement by Leading Stakeholders.


H.R. 6 - SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act

The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act was signed into law on October 24, 2018. The bill contains many provisions designed to standardize the delivery of addiction treatment. You can read a section by section summary of the bill here

  • Directs SAMHSA to provide information for entities applying for grants or cooperative agreements from SAMHSA to encourage the implementation & replication of evidence-based practices
  • Authorizes new grant resources ($10M for each of FY 2019 - 2023) for hospitals and other entities to develop protocols on discharging patients who have presented with an opioid overdose. Protocols would address the provision of an overdose reversal medication, such as naloxone, upon discharge, connection with peer-support specialists, and the referral to treatment and other services that best fit the patient’s needs
  • Oct. 1, 2019 - Sept. 30, 2023: State Medicaid plan amendment option to cover inpatient/residential treatment in facilities with more than 16 beds
    • 30 days for 12 month period
    • Must cover certain ASAM Levels of Care
    • Must ensure eligible individuals receive evidence-based assessments
    • Eligible facilities must follow evidence-based practices and offer at least 2 forms of MAT onsite, including in the case of MAT for OUD, at least one antagonist and one partial agonist
    • On November 6, 2019, CMS issued a State Medicaid Director Letter Regarding Implementation of Section 5052 of the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act – State Plan Option under Section 1915(l) of the Social Security Act. 

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