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Unread 09-29-2011, 11:41 PM   #1
airblaine
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Default Any doctor can prescribe buprenorphine

I don't know if this has been covered, but I have been paying through the nose for the past 5 years for suboxone treatment. I was on a healthy diet of oxy-everything for years before soboxone saved me. I also have some chronic pain (which of course is how all this started) anyhow, I moved from my previous residence to out of state. I was getting close to running out of meds and I could not find a sub doctor within 200 miles and the one I found had a 3 week waiting list! I went through the worst week of my life as withdrawals got worse and worse. I called my previous doctor and begged him to call in a partial prescription and then I had to drive 1 state over to pick it up! I used my 7 days of reprieve before my bupe ran out to find some more information. I was told by the WEBMASTER of http://www.naabt.org/ that buprenorphine is a schedule III drug and could be prescribed by anyone with a pad! WHAT! All this time I have been paying to be wiz-quized and going with month to month scrips. All that money.. oh well - that's CA for ya. I went to a dr here in ND and he wrote me my usual 8mg /day dose with 5 refills- generic bupe- I don't have to see him again until next year. I told him it works for my ankle pain - the truth.
I just want people to know - there is no such thing as a buprenorphine doctor! You just need to find a dr who gives a crap.
Thanks for your time and good luck to all.
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Unread 09-30-2011, 06:32 AM   #2
NancyB
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Hi airblaine, welcome. If a doctor prescribes buprenorphine for addiction, he or she has to have be certified. If a doctor prescribes it for pain, he or she does not have to be certified - doing that is prescribing the medication 'off label'.

Is the doctor who prescribed you the bupe certified? Did he prescribe it to you for addiction or your ankle pain?

From the DATA 2000 law about prescribing bupe for addiction:

"DATA 2000 permits qualified physicians to obtain a waiver from the separate registration requirements of the Narcotic Addict Treatment Act to treat opioid addiction with Schedule III, IV, and V opioid medications or combinations of such medications that have been specifically approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for that indication. Such medications may be prescribed and dispensed."

The only Schedule III, IV, and V opioid medication right now is buprenoprhine.

Hope that explains it.

Nancy
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Unread 10-12-2011, 12:57 PM   #3
Jack123
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Hi Nancy,

I'm sorry, but no, that doesn't explain it. I really don't understand legal talk very well at all. I'm wondering if you could give us a more straight forward answer, or at least give me one. I am currently taking 8 - 10 mg a day of generic Bupe. I am taking it for pain. I became opiate dependent due to pain. No other reason. I have MRIs to prove the nerve damage is real that causes the pain. So I want to know if any doc can write me Bupe scripts, and put refills on them? That alone would be a great thing. I am so broke I go day to day with having to buy food. The doc I see now takes partial insurance, and he doesn't demand the co-pay at each visit. But I currently owe him almost $200. This is absurd. I had a hard time getting stabilized on Bupe this year, but that's all past now. I'm very stabilized, and the dose is even coming down on it's own. I see no reason for why I should have to see him once a month. I'd be very comfortable with every 2 or 3 months. This doc is also being a PCP for me, and with all my other medical problems I may have to see him more often anyway. But is he legally allowed to write me Bupe with refills? I am in NY State, in case that matters. Do you know? Thank you in advance.
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Unread 10-12-2011, 01:17 PM   #4
NancyB
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Hi Jack, to prescribe Suboxone, Subutex and the generic Subutex pills for ADDICTION, the doctor must be DATA2000 certified.

Any doctor can prescribe Suboxone, Subutex and the generic Subutex pills off label for pain, depression or whatever they chose. They do not have to be certified to do that. If the patient has insurance, s/he should check with his/her insurance company because insurance companies are not obligated to cover any medication prescribed off label.

Suboxone, Subutex and the generic Subutex pills are Schedule III medications, which means that a doctor can write the prescription with 5 refills - it doesn't matter what state you're in. It can be written that way for addiction or off label purposes. Also, there is no law saying a doctor has to see buprenorphine patients monthly for either addiction or anything else. The frequency of visits is determined by the doctor.

I hope that better explains it.

Nancy
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Unread 10-13-2011, 11:40 AM   #5
AbbyNormal
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airblaine,

What part of Ca are you in? I know a good doctor in Ventura if that is not too far. He takes most insurance.

TomD
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Unread 08-14-2014, 04:36 PM   #6
GreyPaws
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Sorry for resurrecting this old post, but im in a bind. I have been sober since 9/16/13 and on bupe maintenance since then too. I am stable on 4mg per day, the doctor that did my induction and has thus far been taking care of me is being forced by his office manager to stop treating me because I cant pay what I owe for the last 2 months of seeing him. I live near ventura CA and can't find any doctors who can see me to continue my maintenance. I have goldcoast (medi-cal) and an active TAR at a pharmacy for 30 8mg strips, I just need to find a doctor willing to write a prescription for 30 8mg strips. Im down to 2.5 strips after my dose this morning, and am kind of freaking out a bit. I've been on 4mg for about 6 wweeks and im thinking of going to 2mg a day cause im scared I wont find a doctor. Any help/advice would be welcomed at the moment.

GP
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:48 AM   #7
NancyB
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HI GreyPaws, welcome. Are you able at all to talk directly with your doctor who is being forced to stop seeing you? Maybe he can call in the script just this one time for you, thus bypassing the office manager.

Did you see this thread with different ways to find a doctor?
http://www.addictionsurvivors.org/vb...ad.php?t=21259
Also did you give the Suboxone line a call to see if they can help - they have a number on their website:
http://www.suboxone.com/treatment-plan/find-a-doctor
"FOR HELP FINDING A DOCTOR, CALL 866-973-4373"

Did also check with medi-cal to see if anyone there can help you? From what we've seen, it's kind of difficult for medi-cal patients to find doctors who take that insurance. I guess they don't get much of a reimbursement from medi-cal, from what we were told.

In the meantime, if you could get to 2mg, that would buy you some time while trying to find a new doctor.

I hope this helps.

Nancy
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Unread 08-20-2014, 10:42 AM   #8
GreyPaws
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Thanks for the tips and links to those posts. Im still without a doctor, went down to 2mg per day, it looks like im going to run out, so hopefully a few days at 2mg will at least buffer the withdrawls. It can't possibly be that bad right? I mean when I was abusing black tar I could barely make it to 6 hours without feeling sick, this has to be way easier than kicking h. Right?
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Unread 08-20-2014, 11:51 AM   #9
nan
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Hello GreyPaws, Some folks, when faced with a short supply, have cut down and went as long as they could and then just took a tiny bit, enough to ward off the w/d's. That might make more sense than taking the 2mg everyday until you run out. Just a thought. My daughter stopped at 1 mg and had very little discomfort so I know it is doable. I hope you can find a dr if you feel you need to remain on the medication for awhile.

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