“Individuals who use diverted buprenorphine typically use it to prevent withdrawal symptoms or to maintain abstinence, according to research presented at the American Association of Nurse Practitioners 2018 National Conference.
Many users of diverted buprenorphine cited barriers to treatment access as a reason for not obtaining a prescription for the opioid partial agonist. Because recent legislation has extended buprenorphine waivers to qualified nurse practitioners and physician assistants, these clinicians may be able to help alleviate barriers to access.
In total, 57.8% (n=175) of participants reported using buprenorphine without a prescription, and 37.1% (65) of those participants had never received a prescription. The most frequently reported reasons for diversion of buprenorphine were to prevent withdrawal (79%), to maintain abstinence (67%), or to wean themselves off drugs (53%), all of which are consistent with the therapeutic use of this product. Only 4% of participants indicated that buprenorphine was their drug of choice for getting high.
Among participants who had a history of using diverted buprenorphine, 84% obtained the drug from a dealer and 33% reported difficulty locating a clinician or obtaining the drug on their own.”
Source: ClinicalAdvisor.com – July 1, 2018