Access to methadone clinics and opioid overdose deaths in Georgia: A geospatial analysis

Tahiya Anwar, Meagan Duever, Jayani Jayawardhana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: As a result of the opioid epidemic, the demand for treatment options for opioid use disorder (OUD) such as methadone has increased. Methadone can only be administered in methadone clinics. Though numerous methadone clinics are located across the state of Georgia, access to methadone treatment may still be a concern for certain areas of the state. In this study, we examine the relationship between access to methadone clinics and opioid overdose death rates at the county level and compare access to treatment through Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) if methadone provision was to expand in Georgia. Methods: We utilize location data for methadone clinics and FQHCs, and opioid overdose death rates at the county level from 2019 for the study analysis. The analysis was carried out using a geographical information system (GIS) mapping and a descriptive analysis. Results: The results show that there is no methadone clinic accessible to individuals within a 15-minute drive time for 4 out of the 5 counties with the highest opioid overdose death rates in Georgia, though FQHCs are accessible within a 15-minute drive time to more than 67% of the population in each of these counties. Additionally, 7 out of the 9 counties with the highest opioid overdose death rates have no methadone clinic accessible within a 15-minute drive time, though all those counties have easier access to FQHCs. Conclusion: If methadone distribution was to expand to FQHCs, more counties and a larger area of Georgia would have greater access to methadone treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109565
JournalDrug and Alcohol Dependence
Volume238
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • Drive time
  • Federally qualified health center
  • Methadone access
  • Opioid use disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Access to methadone clinics and opioid overdose deaths in Georgia: A geospatial analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this