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The Opioid Epidemic: Panhandle Response

Training Opportunities

Narcan Training

Increase Access to Naloxone

Partnering with Pharmacies, Law Enforcement and Fire Departments to increase the availability of naloxone across the Panhandle. We know this is a strategy that saves lives. 


Medication Assisted Treatment in the Panhandle

Addiction is a Neurological Disease. MAT services are effective to treat addition acting as a guide to a full recovery for a self-directed life.


Medication Disposal

Dispose of your leftover medications at one of the safe and legal no cost disposal sites across the Panhandle.


Safe Storage of Prescription Medications

Partnering with agencies and health systems across the Panhandle to increase knowledge on how and why to safely store prescription medications.


Nebraska Medical Association

Medication Assisted Treatment Education Initiative
In partnership with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (NDHHS) Division of Behavioral Health (DBH), the Nebraska Medical Association is committed to increasing the opportunities for physicians and other health care providers to learn more about Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) for the benefit of Nebraskans struggling with an opioid use disorder.
In 2018, 154 people in Nebraska died of a drug overdose, at least 60 involved opioids. In 2017, 183 people in Nebraska died of a drug overdose, at least 59 involved opioids. (Source: Nebraska Vital Records 2006-2018) Since 2017, NDHHS has received grant funds from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and other federal agencies to increase awareness and education about opioid use, implement prevention strategies and provide treatment for people who could not otherwise afford medications to address opioid addiction.


The Medication Assisted Treatment Education Initiative 2021 provides:

  • One-hour introductory education sessions (MAT 101) for physicians and other health care providers about Medication Assisted Treatment; what it is, how it can benefit individuals suffering from an opioid use disorder and how to become a MAT certified provider.
  • Four or 8-hour MAT Waiver training (currently virtual format) that can lead to MAT certification.
  • Mentorship and/or consultation services for new MAT providers to learn from more experienced prescribers working with this special population of patients.
  • Tailored educational presentations for unique audiences such as social workers, case workers and other staff in juvenile justice, behavioral health, corrections, and other settings where knowledge of MAT can be useful.

MAT 101

In this one-hour (1 CME with paid participation) session, participants will learn:

  • What is Medication Assisted Treatment for patients with opioid dependence?
  • What does it mean to become a MAT provider?
  • How do you become a MAT provider? What are the requirements?
  • What are the benefits of becoming a MAT provider?
  • What are the challenges of becoming a MAT provider?

MAT Waiver Training

New federal regulations (April 2021) have reduced the training requirements for prescribers to prescribe FDA-approved medications for MAT. Licensed prescribers (MD, PA, NP) can treat up to 30 patients at a time with MAT medications without specified training. If they will see more than 30 patients at a time, physicians are required to complete 8 hours of training to receive the X waiver from the DEA. Nurses (NP/CNM/CNS/CRNA) and physician assistants must complete 24 hours of specialized training to prescribe medications for purposes of MAT.
In any case, whether seeing less than or more than 30 patients, each prescriber must still obtain the “X waiver” from SAMHSA and the DEA by completing a Notice of Intent.
Detailed information about MAT and MAT training can be found on SAMHSA’s Providers Clinical Support System (PCSS) at https://pcssnow.org/medication-assisted-treatment/
Nebraska Medical Association partners with PCSS to provide the approved and certified MAT training.

CDC Clinical Practice Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Pain ? United States, 2022

Tailored Education and Mentoring
Physician experts in Medication Assisted Treatment are available to design educational presentations appropriate for any audience on opioid use disorder, substance use disorder and care of persons suffering from this disease. MAT experts are available any time for consultation and/or mentoring.
Newly trained MAT providers can request mentoring for assistance in operationalizing MAT within their practice or clinical setting.
There is NO COST to participants or organizations that participate in any of these programs.


For more information about this project and about upcoming training opportunities in Nebraska contact:
Jean Stilwell
DHHS Project Coordinator
Nebraska Medical Association
233 South 13th St., Ste. 1200
Lincoln, NE 68508

Nebraska Pain Management Guidance Document

A provider and Community Resource.? Promotes consistent, safe, and effective management standards for Nebraska prescribers.  It includes information on treating acute pain, chronic pain, non-opioid options for pain treatment, treating pain in special populations, and opioid tapering/discontinuation.  An educational training video on the DHHS website complements the content of this document to assist in training Nebraska?s providers in safe pain management.


Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) Access

The Nebraska Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) is a unique statewide tool that collects dispensed prescription medication information and is housed on the Health Information Exchange (HIE) platform. The Nebraska PDMP is a public health model focusing on patient safety. In order to facilitate provisioning and other registration processes for the Nebraska PDMP, DHHS has moved to an online form to improve efficiency.


Media Campaigns

Increase awareness that prescription opioids can be addictive and dangerous.? To decrease the number of individuals who use opioids recreationally or overuse them.


Nebraska?s Legislative Response

Addresses prescription opioid abuse by adopting and strengthening an electronic prescription drug monitoring program; relaxing rules for administering life-saving, overdose reversing drugs; and granting immunity from prosecution for drug crimes related to individuals who call for help during an apparent overdose.