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Related Guidance

CMS has been working with states to provide opportunities within Medicaid to enhance existing efforts or take up new efforts to design, deliver, and pay for services that improve health outcomes. Over the past several years, CMS has issued a series of bulletins on service coverage, authority options and resources for states to identify and treat SUD under Medicaid:

  • In July 2014, CMS, in partnership with CDC, SAMHSA, and NIH released a joint Informational Bulletin (PDF, 163.14 KB) to support work with states to offer a broad continuum of SUD services related to medication assisted treatment. 
  • In October 2014, we issued an Informational Bulletin (PDF, 112.92 KB) for states and stakeholders to share our approach on the Medicaid IAP Reducing Substance Use Disorders Program Area.
  • In January 2015, CMS and SAMHSA released a joint Informational Bulletin (PDF, 253.47 KB) to address the needs of youth with SUD.
  • In February 2016, CMS released an Informational Bulletin (PDF, 142.72 KB) describing emerging best practices for preventing opioid-related harm, including several Medicaid pharmacy benefit management strategies for preventing harms associated with prescription opioid pain medications.
  • In November 2017, CMS released a State Medicaid Director letter (PDF, 170.7 KB) to states describing additional flexibilities to help states improve access to and quality of substance use disorder treatment through Medicaid 1115 demonstrations.  This revised policy will take the place of the initiative announced in the State Medicaid Directors’ letter issued on July 27, 2015.