Art Van Zee discusses the evolution of treatment for opioid addiction, including monumental shifts particularly valuable to rural communities such as St. Charles, Va. He explains that access to methadone maintenance treatment is extremely restricted for many people in isolated regions, as it would incur unsustainable expenses (both financial and time-related) just to get to where these treatment centers are offered. The introduction of office-based opioid medication (such as with Subaxone), in contrast, has made significant contributions to addressing opioid addiction in Appalachia. However, Art frames the issue as ongoing, in part due to incredibly high relapse rates.
Recorded April 2017.