Injectable opioid agonist therapy in British Columbia: An effective treatment with persistent barriers
The opioid overdose crisis in Canada has dramatically worsened during the current COVID-19 pandemic. People who use opioids are dying at unprecedented rates, and a rapid expansion of available treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD) is needed. Injectable opioid agonist therapy (iOAT) is an evidence-based treatment for OUD with a superior retention rate. However, iOAT is currently only available in 7 specialized clinics across British Columbia, and many people who may benefit from iOAT cannot access it. In this commentary paper, we discuss evidence behind iOAT, barriers preventing greater access, and make suggestions around how to improve access to iOAT.