Skip to Main Content

Advanced Search

Customer Connect Login | Payer Login | Surveyor Login

CARF Canada | CARF Europe | uSPEQ®

  • Federal update: SAMHSA proposes changes to regulation of Opioid Treatment Programs

    On December 16, 2022, the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) published proposed changes to the federal rules regulating OTPs (42 CFR Part 8). The Proposed Rule, if finalized, would represent the first substantial changes to OTP regulation in over 20 years. The Proposed Rule is available for review in the Federal Register. Public comments on the Proposed Rule may be submitted until February 14, 2023, at Regulations.gov. CARF encourages you to review the Proposed Rule and submit comments by the deadline.

    Although many of the proposed changes would be impactful if approved, CARF draws your attention to the following proposals that it believes would be particularly significant to OTPs:

    • § 8.4(b)(1)(iii) and (b)(2) – Would require an OTP in less than 60 days to both develop and implement activities to achieve full conformance to each and every standard that receives a recommendation from an accreditation survey, so that the accreditation body can within the same 60-day period verify that the OTP has achieved full conformance to all standards (potentially via a subsequent follow-up survey, at additional cost to the OTP). The existence of one or more recommendations following verification would result in One-Year Accreditation or Nonaccreditation. Only OTPs in full conformance to all standards could be issued a Three-Year Accreditation (see p. 77353 of the Federal Register).
    • § 8.12(e) – Would revise admission requirements for persons entering treatment (see p. 77357 of the Federal Register; discussed at p. 77340).
    • § 8.12(i) – Would adopt the expanded take-home options introduced during the pandemic (see p. 77359 of the Federal Register; discussed at pp. 77341-77342).
  • Opioid Treatment Program Hub

    Opioid treatment programs (OTPs) provide medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for persons diagnosed with opioid use disorder using any of three FDA-approved medications: methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. OTPs dispense medication and are certified by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT). If your program provides MAT for persons diagnosed with opioid use disorder but is not a CSAT-certified OTP, or if you are unsure of your program type, please contact us to be connected with a resource specialist. To learn more about CARF’s accreditation for a full continuum of substance use disorder treatment, please visit our Behavioral Health page.

    The duration of treatment, type of medication, and medication dosage should be based on the needs of each person served, and objective withdrawal criteria should be used. Services are directed at improving quality of life and functioning by reducing or eliminating the use of illicit substances (to reduce criminal activity and/or the spread of infectious disease) and fostering vocational skills, family relationships, and community involvement.

    To be certified by SAMHSA, an OTP must be accredited by a CSAT-approved accrediting body like CARF. CARF accredits the majority of OTPs in the U.S. Find an accredited provider here.

     OTPs must select from the following core programs:

    OTPs offer a comprehensive continuum of services and can also select from one of the following supplementary programs:

    The following specific population designations may be added to a program:

    Please refer to the program descriptions for further details.

    For more information on CARF opioid treatment program accreditation, please email otp@carf.org, or call toll-free at (888) 281-6531.

    CARF standards

    The CARF standards are developed with the input of providers, consumers, payers, and other experts from around the world. As such, CARF standards are field driven and have international consensus. Each year, CARF updates its standards manuals to ensure that the standards are relevant and guide service excellence with current practices.

    The Opioid Treatment Program Standards Manual and companion publications are available for purchase in the CARF Online Store.


Legal notices  Careers  Contact Us

Text: A A A