Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Barbara Niedz


Opioid drug misuse and dependence are a social and public health problem in the United States. Prescription opioid abuse and misuse have been associated with substantial morbidity and mortality rates as well as social and economic costs. The purpose of this project was to provide a systematic review of literature on the effectiveness of medication-assisted therapy interventions in addressing the problem of prescription opioid misuse in health care settings. The systematic review was completed through a literature search conducted across five electronic databases. The review was guided by the health belief model and eligible studies were rated using Johns Hopkins hierarchy of evidence. Fifteen peer-reviewed journal articles published from 2011 met the inclusion criteria and were reviewed in full. Of these, 14 were randomized controlled trials and 1 was a quasi-experimental study. The most commonly explored interventions were psychosocial interventions in conjunction with medications for opioid addiction. Review findings provided moderate evidence to support the effectiveness of psychosocial interventions in conjunction with medications in the treatment of opioid dependence, although the strength of the efficacy varied depending on the intervention provided. This project may advance nursing field by promoting provision of care to opioid dependent patients based on the best available evidence. Evidence-based care to patients with prescription opioid dependence will positively impact social change by improving the quality of life of patients, relieving caregivers of the burden of monitoring the addicted patients and saving millions of dollars spent in the criminal justice and health care systems.

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Nursing Commons