The objective of this article is to examine trends in opioid use disorder treatment, including buprenorphine possession, urine drug testing, and opioid treatment program services during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

In a sample of continuously enrolled adult Medicaid beneficiaries, the COVID-19 public health emergency was not associated with decreased probability of buprenorphine possession but was associated with decreased probability of urine drug testing and opioid treatment program services. These findings suggest patients in office-based settings retained access to buprenorphine despite decreased on-site services like urine drug tests, whereas patients at opioid treatment programs experienced greater disruption in care. Given the importance of medications for opioid use disorder in preventing overdose, policymakers should consider permanent policy changes based on lessons learned from the public health emergency to enable ongoing enhanced access to these medications.

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