Regulatory agencies are doing everything they can to fight back against America’s opioid crisis, which includes additional requirements for Medication Access and Training Expansion (MATE) Act compliance.
Many healthcare providers might remember rumblings of the MATE Act back in 2021, when the legislation was originally proposed. Now, effective June 27, 2023, all Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)-registered practitioners will need to complete a one-time, eight-hour training requirement for DEA licensing (every three years). This additional training will help practitioners to screen more people for substance use disorders, treat pain appropriately, prevent substance abuse, and engage in life-saving interventions.
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What Is the MATE Act?
The Medication Access and Training Expansion (MATE) Act is a byproduct of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023. Under the MATE Act, all DEA-registered practitioners must undergo a new one-time, eight-hour training requirement on the treatment and management of patients with opioid or other substance use disorders. This requirement applies to both new practitioners and those renewing their licensure.
The intended purpose of the MATE Act is twofold. First, it educates clinicians on their responsibility to prescribe potentially addictive drugs with caution. Second, it’s meant to pave inroads into a better understanding of how to fight back against the opioid crisis in America. by requiring additional training focused on responsible opioid use, clinicians should be more cognizant of the ramifications of prescribing them.
Requirements for Satisfying MATE Act Training
The eight-hour training prerequisite mandated by the MATE Act is surprisingly open-ended and gives practitioners a wide breadth of options for how they’ll meet this new compliance requirement. Because it’s required for all DEA-registered practitioners, there are a variety of ways to achieve compliance and a long list of accredited bodies that offer compliance training:
- The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM)
- The American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP)
- American Medical Association (AMA)
- The American Osteopathic Association (AOA)
- The American Dental Association (ADA)
- The American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS)
- The American Psychiatric Association (APA)
- The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
- The American Academy of Physician Associates (AAPA)
- The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC)
Clinicians can satisfy the eight-hour training requirement through formal courses, seminars, professional society events, virtual trainings, quizzes, and many other formats. The eight hours of training do not need to occur consecutively and practitioners can take them at their own pace.
Most notably, training hours can be applied retroactively. Past trainings on the treatment and management of patients with opioid or other substance use disorders can count towards a practitioner meeting this requirement if they were administered by any of the accredited bodies listed above.
Who Is Exempt From MATE Act Training Requirements?
Practitioners who are Board Certified in addiction medicine or addiction psychiatry from the American Board of Medical Specialties, the American Board of Addiction Medicine, or the American Osteopathic Association are exempt from MATE Act training requirements. These individuals are considered to be addiction experts who are already knowledgeable on the ramifications of chemical substances and addiction.
In addition to Board Certified addiction specialists, any practitioner who graduated from a medical, dental, physician assistant, or advanced practice nursing school in the United States within five years of June 27, 2023 is also exempted — provided their education included at least one eight-hour course on treating and managing patients with opioid or other substance use disorders.
Tips for Complying With the MATE Act
While it’s not difficult to achieve the new mandated eight hours of training for the MATE Act, it’s still a requirement. Practitioners who complete these hours and renew their DEA licensure will be able to screen more people for substance use disorders, treat pain appropriately, prevent substance abuse, and engage in life-saving interventions.
Here are ways to maintain MATE Act compliance for your practice or organization:
1. Offer a diversity of training
The purpose of the MATE Act is to increase awareness and understanding of opioid addiction and, hopefully, combat substance abuse at the point of origin. Offering a diverse range of training opportunities helps to broaden physician understanding of this multifaceted problem and its alternatives.
Using a learning management system dedicated to the healthcare industry provides a diversity of course options, along with the confidence they are up-to-date and meet regulatory requirements. For example, MedTrainer’s course library includes 15 relevant courses ranging in duration from 20 minutes to 120 minutes. It’s possible to earn up to 10.5 continuing education credits by taking these courses.
Course topics include:
- Detoxification and Withdrawal Management for Individuals with Addiction
- Overview of Opioid Treatment Programs and Medication Assisted Treatment
- Post-Operative Pain Management and Opioid Considerations
- Responsible Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain
- Assessment of Risk for Hazardous Drugs
- Basics of Medication Administration
- Basics of Medication Management
- Characteristics of an Effective Medication Management System
2. Make it easy for employees to complete training
Eight hours is a time commitment, but it’s much easier to manage when you can work it into your schedule when you have time. Online training that can be completed anywhere is much simpler for busy providers — especially when there’s not much to ensure MATE Act compliance! A learning management system, like MedTrainer, offers clinicians self-paced education opportunities that are compact and easy to remember. Plus, you can pause mid-course if something comes up.
3. Automate DEA verifications and renewal reminders
From a MATE Act compliance perspective, possibly the most challenging part is determining who’s due for their DEA licensure renewal and whether they’ve completed the required training.
For this reason alone, it’s worth looking into an all-in-one compliance platform. Adding expiration dates to each document or license will automatically trigger reminder emails for both you and the provider. Plus, real-time reporting will show you all the providers who will be expiring, as well as the courses they’ve completed, so you can take action with plenty of time to spare.
Take risk management one step further with automated DEA verifications. See all provider statuses in one view and download the license right within the MedTrainer platform.
Use MedTrainer To Streamline MATE Act Compliance
A new compliance requirement is nothing to worry about when all of your compliance operations are in a single platform, like MedTrainer. You’ve got 10.5 CEU hours — accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) — ready to go and you know it will satisfy the DEA requirement for MATE Act compliance.
Beyond the features of a modern learning management system, MedTrainer can help you to stay on top of license expirations and give you complete visibility into your team and potential risks. Learning is a modern learning management system with automated reminders, robust reporting, and more. It offers everything you need to stay compliant with DEA requirements (and other agency compliance standards) — all in one place. Schedule a demo today, before MATE Act requirements go into effect!