Our Veteran population is faced with many issues that make dealing with opiate dependency even tougher in some ways than with the rest of the population.

Many Veterans are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and refractory depression, as well as those with severe medical issues with chronic pain related to their service. We need to address these issues. Although the Veteran’s Administration has been there for us in the past, helping many of us to learn coping skills and offering medical care in order for us to lead more productive lives, the issues of what used to be called “dual diagnosis” still hinder us from achieving our goals at times.

Veterans with PTSD have a much higher rate of substance abuse problems and depression than that of the civilian population, and Veterans who have chronic pain also many times end up with not only a physical dependency on the medication they need to live more normally, but a psychological and emotional dependency as well.

The good news is that Buprenorphine (Suboxone®/Subutex®) has been proven to be extremely american flageffective in treating opioid dependency, and the majority of people who use Buprenorphine also report a huge improvement in their depression symptoms. And as it was originally developed as an analgesic, it is effective in relieving pain.

The bad news is that Buprenorphine, although approved for use by the Veteran’s Administration and on the formulary, is not being used at all VA Medical Centers and in VA substance abuse treatment programs. This forces many of us in areas where we cannot go to the VA for Buprenorphine treatment to have to rely on local private physicians for treatment and counseling. The fact that this treatment can be more expensive in the private practice arena is especially tough on disabled Veterans, who rely only on their disability or retirement income and cannot afford to be treated.

I urge all Veterans out there, as well as our civilian comrades, to help us change this. Write your Congressmen and Senators; write the Veteran’s Administration. In the long run, treatment with Buprenorphine will be less expensive for the Federal government and the Veteran’s Administration, as well as more effective and more successful for our Veterans who so desperately need this treatment. Veterans – Petition your local VA Medical Center to institute a Buprenorphine treatment program if it doesn’t have one. Remember: Veteran’s medical care and treatment is not free – we PREPAID for our benefits; and we have a right to demand effective and cost-efficient treatment that has been proven over and over scientifically to be the most successful, medically assisted treatment to date. We owe it to ourselves and to our comrades to insist on the best treatment available for our Veterans. Talk to your physician, and write today! - Jay Morgan, NAABT Member

For assistance with Veteran’s issues:
You may contact the Department of Veterans Affairs at:
Find your Congressmen and Senators:

precipitated withdrawal syndrome
Besides the Wall Street Journal article last summer, this is the first mass exposure article about the efficacy of Buprenorphine treatment. But more then the efficacy, lack of diversion, and the success stories, was the manner in which this article was written. It represents a shift in the perception of this disease. The title “New drug treats the new face of addiction” indicates a change in the perceived demographic of who can have an addiction disorder.

The sensationalism and colorful street language often prevalent with addiction stories was omitted in favor of respectful and accurate medical language. Patients were not referred to as junkies, addicts, or criminals. This article discussed a treatment for a disease like any other effective new medication. This is a giant step forward in overcoming the main barrier to treatment – stigma – which still prevents many physicians from prescribing and patients from seeking treatment.

The article supports the efficacy of Buprenorphine along with patient testimonials touting the profound life-saving effects it has had on their lives. Leading experts in the field of addiction medicine from Yale University were quoted. The practice of maintenance therapy was presented as mainstream treatment for a chronic recurring disease that requires ongoing treatment. Lynn Sullivan, MD, pointed out this shift in perception ”This is a medication not a drug”. Scott Prince, MD, explained, “They (uncertified doctors) are afraid of that type of patient, but they don't understand. That type of patient is in their office already.”

The article reports that since its introduction 200,000 people have taken Suboxone of the estimated 3.5 million people addicted to prescription opioids or heroin. (<6%)

USA Today also announced collaboration with HBO that will include future articles on cutting-edge treatments, affects of addiction on lives and communities, and a three-hour public service special in January 2007.

The entire article can be found on our home page

what's new at

Dr. Campana points out that the stigma is a major deterrent for patients seeking treatment, and showed that his patients are not stereotypical. “There is a major stigma with addiction among the general public, who believe that addiction is a character flaw or a moral weakness… I treat individuals ranging from high profile business owners to teachers, professionals, housewives, high school students” he said.

The most satisfying cases that Campana has handled to date involved several young men he treated for heroin addiction. “They were all very intelligent and from solid, loving families. Yet each of them was being consumed by heroin addiction. Their families were devastated…” “…once these young men started taking Suboxone, their withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings completely dissipated and their general sense of wellbeing improved dramatically.” He continued, “They are all gainfully employed or working on advanced educational degrees.” Drug abuse by Frank Shatz, Jan. 28, 2006 • The Virginia Gazette

April 22 - 26, 2006, in Atlanta, Georgia. The theme for this year’s conference is “TREATING PEOPLE WITH DIGNITY: Working with Criminal Justice and Health Care Systems”.

Included among the activities are numerous workshops, exhibits, hospitality activities and entertainment as well as local facility tours. As always, Saturday and Sunday will feature a series of cutting edge pre-conference sessions for veteran clinicians, clinicians new to the field and all other conference participants.

For comprehensive information, please go to:

in the coming months
• Advocacy
• Pregnancy and Buprenorphine
• Results of Patient Waiting List Pilot
All NAABT literature is available on the Literature page as PDF files of literature for you to download and view or print for your convenience. For multiple copies of NAABT Literature, please email your request to

The Physician Locator (Doctor/Patient button) sorts physicians by distance in geographic proximity, regardless of city, town, county, or state borders.

Click here to try it for yourself.

Current Newsletters are available at the homepage. Past editions are available as PDF files on our Literature page, under Other Literature.

The National Alliance of Advocates for Buprenorphine Treatment is a non-profit organization formed to help people, in need of treatment, find treatment providers who are willing and able to treat opioid dependency in the privacy of a doctor’s office. Our website offers answers to frequently asked questions, a glossary, actual patient experiences, a discussion board, information on the history and treatments of opioid addiction, current news on the subject and more.

This newsletter is provided to keep you informed on matters relating to Buprenorphine Treatment. Please feel free to contact us at with feedback, suggestions, or perhaps you would like to contribute a story. Also feel free to photocopy or print as many as these newsletters as you wish for distribution.

To add yourself or someone you know to the mailing list, please either write us or email us at


The National Alliance of Advocates for Buprenorphine Treatment
NAABT, Inc. • P.O. Box 333 • Farmington, CT 06034
Tel: 860.269.4390 • Fax: 860.269.4391 • email: