2019 Effective Treatments for Opioid Use Disorder: Educating & Empowering Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) During an Epidemic

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2019 Effective Treatments for Opioid Use Disorder:
Educating & Empowering Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) During an Epidemic

This continuing educational activity was developed by the American Psychiatric Nurses Association to provide education to all nurses regarding the epidemic of opioid use in the U.S. and to answer the question, 
What can nurses do?" to address this growing problem.

Almost 4 million nurses can make a difference!


This three-module eLearning series discusses key morbidity and mortality statistics related to the use of heroin and prescription opioid medications. The Scope and Standards of Practice for psychiatric-mental health nurses are the foundation for practice decisions.  The advanced practice nurse (APRN) needs evidence-based knowledge and strategies to identify and select pharmacologic and psychotherapeutic treatment options within the APRN scope of practice for patients with opioid use disorders. Considerations for treating special populations with opioid use disorder, including pregnant women and persons with comorbid HIV/AIDS and/or HCV, are also discussed in this course.

In Module I you will learn about the epidemiology surrounding the use of heroin and opioid use in the United States. The Scope and Standards of Practice for the psychiatric-mental health nurse will be the foundation for assessing the patient at risk for opioid use disorders. Some of the risk factors associated with opioid use disorders will be presented. Various treatment options will be discussed, along with strategies nurses can employ to help patients select the appropriate individualized treatment plan combining psychosocial and medication assisted interventions.

In Module II you will learn about strategies for identifying and selecting pharmacologic and psychotherapeutic treatment options within the APRN scope of practice for patients with opioid use disorders. The attributes of three current medications, methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone, will be discussed. 

In Module III you will learn about special considerations that need to be considered when providing care to different population groups regarding intervention options.   

Presenters:  Laura G. Leahy, DrNP, APRN, PMH-CNS/FNP, CARN-AP, FAANP; Matthew Tierney, MSN, PMHNP-BC, FANP-BC, FAAN
Contributing Faculty:  Carolyn Baird, DNP, MBA, RN-BC, CARN-AP, CCDPD, FIAAN; Susan Caverly, PhD, APRN, RN-BC, PLLC; Mary Kastner, PMHNP-BC

Disclosures: The presenters and planners have no conflict of interest or commercial support to disclose.  Off-label use of medications will be discussed during this presentation.


Session Length:  3 hours

Target Audience:  APRN

Learning Outcomes:
Upon completion of this presentation, the participant will be able to:

  1. Identify key morbidity and mortality statistics related to heroin and prescription opioid use in recent years.
  2. Identify psychotherapeutic treatment options for patients with opioid use disorders.
  3. Identify pharmacological treatment options for patients with opioid use disorders and select the best treatment options based on patient needs.
  4. Describe at least one way to increase access to treatment for opioid use disorders in the settings or communities where you work as a psychiatric nurse.
  5. Identify unique considerations when choosing treatment options for specific population groups.

Keywords: Opioid Use Disorder, Opioids, Heroin

Price: Free


Continuing Nursing Education:
3.5 contact hours (of which 2.0 are in pharmacology). * In order to receive contact hours, you must: Listen to the entire session, complete an evaluation, and earn a passing score on the post-tests before the expiration date. You will have 5 tries to correctly answer the questions on the post-tests and a score of 80% is required to pass. Once you have passed the post-tests and completed an evaluation, the certificate will be generated online, available for you to print immediately. You cannot earn credit unless all steps are completed. Partial credit will not be awarded. 

The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited with distinction as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation. 

Release Date: August 28, 2019
The contact hours for this session expire: September 30, 2022

Components visible upon registration.