This measure assesses the degree to which Vermont Medicaid initiates (starts) and engages (continues) treatment for members identified with a need for alcohol and other drug dependence (AOD) services. Two rates are reported for this measure:
- Initiation – the % of Medicaid beneficiaries diagnosed with AOD dependence who start treatment through an inpatient AOD admission or an outpatient service for AOD abuse or dependence within 14 days. (See previous scorecard.)
- Engagement – the % of Medicaid beneficiaries diagnosed with AOD dependence who then received two (2) additional AOD services within 34 days after the start of AOD treatment. (The data represented in the chart here is the DVHA's Engagement Total rate (13-17 years combined with 18+ years. Separate engagement rates for those population sub-sets are also tracked.)
The need for Vermont to work on our opioid use epidemic is well documented and has garnered media and public attention. Possibly less well known, is the fact that alcohol abuse, on its own, still represents the larger percentage of substance abuse for Vermonters. Please read further under “What Works” and “Strategies” to learn more about what Vermont Medicaid is doing to help Vermonters prevent and treat substance abuse.
The treatment engagement rate remained steady during measurement year (MY) 2020, in spite of the pandemic. During that time the number of people seeking care for alcohol use decreased, but we saw increases in the number of people accessing care for opioids during the pandemic. The results of this measure are greatly impacted by the use of medication assisted therapy (MAT) and there were some changes in the federal regulations that gave more flexibility to providers and clients around MAT dosing and prescribing.
Last updated: September 2021