The conversation our class had with Keli McLoyd from the Research Treatment Institute on Tuesday provided a lot of helpful information and resources to use moving forward with the project. The thing I liked the most about the talk was discussing the differences between buprenorphine, methadone and naltrexone. I think media coverage of these medications hasn’t delved into the medications’ differences and why certain prescriptions work and don’t work for certain patients. Information like this is important during solutions journalism because we should be taking a critical look at solutions and their miscomings, not a fluffy one.
McLoyd also said none of these medications are fully effective if there’s no psychosocial therapy component offered alongside the prescriptions—another characteristic of medication-assisted treatment that I don’t think is talked about often enough. She added that insurance usually covers the medications, but not therapy. ‘
It’s become more clear to me that addiction can be combated through two broad angles: prevention and treatment. McLoyd’s presentation touched on resource allocation and how the treatment our country currently funds is not working. There’s too much money being made and going in to temporary solutions with a lack of follow-up care.