“We’ve had a circuit breaker for an old dogma of more than 20 years”: Opioid Agonist Treatment during COVID-19, the CHOICE Study

During the COVID-19 pandemic, opioid agonist treatment (OAT) services adapted to ensure continuity of care. Interim guidance for a national response to the delivery of OAT during COVID-19 was drawn up in April 2020. The guidance constituted a complex intervention which not only reduced risk of COVID-19 transmission but also loosened constraints on people receiving OAT, demonstrating that this revised model of care is feasible in Australia. In this seminar I draw on 70 interviews with providers and people receiving OAT, collected in the CHOICE study, to discuss fidelity to this complex intervention and to identify pathways to normalisation.

Anna Conway is a PhD candidate in the Kirby Institute and the Centre for Social Research in Health, investigating service use and health outcomes in people who use opioids.

 

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