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Are SNFs turning away those with opioid addiction? And is that legal?

A new article in STAT explores whether long-term care facilities can legally turn away those seeking post-acute care who are taking medicine to treat opioid addiction. According to STAT, many nursing facilities routinely — and sometimes systematically and by policy — do not take in otherwise eligible residents for care if they are on medicines for opioid addition, such as methadone or buprenorphine.

However, experts say this violates the Americans with Disabilities Act, and that the U.S. Department of Justice could launch an investigation into the matter, just as they have done with detention centers not adequately treating inmates with addictions.

While long-term care facilities might lack resources or knowledge of caring for these residents, some addiction experts have begun to partner with nursing facilities to help.

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