uMAT-R is a mobile application (app) that educates individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD) about medication-assisted treatment (MAT) options.
uMAT-R provides validated health information on MAT benefits and OUD recovery options to adults with OUD who are not engaged in MAT. MAT combines medication (methadone, buprenorphine, or naltrexone) and behavioral therapy to treat OUD. uMAT-R content derives from the online Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) handbook Decisions in Recovery: Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders. App content covers OUD treatment options, costs, latest research findings, and potential side effects of MAT medications. uMAT-R consists of 5 modules with 2 to 13 lessons per module. Modules deliver content through 15 text-based lessons (audiovisual alternatives available), 13 video lessons, and 6 digital worksheets. uMAT-R also features video testimonials from individuals who have had positive experiences with medication treatment for OUD. An app appendix includes a glossary and list of resources.
Mobile application (app)
Motivation to change (drug use behavior)
Young Adults (18-30)
Delivering information about medication assisted treatment to individuals who misuse opioids through a mobile app: A pilot study
Cavazos-Rehg P, Krauss M , Costello S, et al. Journal of Public Health. 2020. 42(1): 149‐154. doi: 10.1093/pubmed/fdy207
Summary: Researchers recruited 161 individuals who misused opioids to participate in a pilot study of the impact of uMAT-R on participant attitudes towards MAT. Participant recruitment occurred via study posts on 3 opioid-focused Reddit subreddits (i.e. forums). Recruitment posts invited users to take an online eligibility survey. All participants were 18 years or older, reported past-month opioid use, and were not engaged in MAT. Almost all participants met the criteria for OUD (96%). Participants completed assessments at baseline, pre-intervention, and post-intervention. At baseline, participants reported demographics, took a brief measure of opioid dependence, and answered OUD-related questions. Pre- and post-intervention assessments via in-app surveys measured participant attitudes towards MAT and interest in beginning OUD treatment. Of the 161 participants recruited to pilot the uMAT-R app, 44 participants downloaded uMAT-R and logged in, and 26 participants completed all 5 uMAT-R modules and all 3 assessments. Researchers analyzed only the results from the 26 participants who completed all modules and assessments. Participants took an average of 4.9 days to complete all 5 modules. Study results revealed significant improvement in participant attitudes towards MAT: average scores on the MAT attitudes scale increased from pre-intervention (3.31) to post-intervention (3.46). The percentage of participants who expressed interest in initiating OUD treatment increased significantly from pre-intervention (32%) to post-intervention (48%). Almost all participants would consult uMAT-R for help with recovery-related decisions (88%) and felt the app improved understanding of recovery options (84%). Most participants also believed uMAT-R encouraged users to take a more active role in recovery (80%).
Take Away: Among individuals with OUD who were not engaged in MAT, uMAT-R demonstrated preliminary efficacy in improving attitudes towards MAT and increasing interest in treatment initiation.