Date of Award


Degree Name

Healthcare Administration


College of Business

Type of Degree


Document Type

Research Paper

First Advisor

Alberto Coustasse


Introduction: Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), now known as Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome (NOWS) by government authorities, is a severe postnatal withdrawal condition caused by opioid exposure during pregnancy. NAS is diagnosed every 25 minutes in the United States. Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) with buprenorphine was used to treat opioid use disorder (OUD) and NAS. The MOTHER trial found that utilizing buprenorphine to treat mother OUD during pregnancy led to significant decreases in LOS and length of therapy.

Purpose of the Study: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a prenatal care program that integrates buprenorphine-based Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid-dependent pregnant women.

Methodology: The study employs a qualitative literature review methodology, utilizing online library research databases, such as EBSCOhost, PubMed, CINAHL, ProQuest, and EDLINE. Google and Google Scholar are also utilized to explore government and private websites relevant to NAS and medication-assisted treatment. The search focuses on articles published in English from 2015 to 2024, which were selected for comprehensive review.

Results: The study explored the efficacy of integrating buprenorphine-based Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) in prenatal care for opioid-dependent pregnant women. Findings indicate significant reductions in the incidence of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) among newborns, coupled with decreased hospital length of stay (LOS) and overall treatment costs. Buprenorphine treatment also improved maternal health outcomes and higher treatment retention rates. Additionally, buprenorphine's safety during breastfeeding contributed to reduced NAS severity and shorter hospital stays for neonates. These outcomes affirm the benefits of buprenorphine in prenatal MAT programs, underscoring its potential to enhance maternal and neonatal health while mitigating the financial burden on healthcare systems.

Discussion/Conclusions: This study confirms the effectiveness of buprenorphine-based Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) in prenatal care, significantly reducing Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) among neonates from opioid-dependent mothers. Buprenorphine reduces hospital stays and treatment costs, offers clinical and economic benefits, and is safe and effective during breastfeeding, leading to milder NAS symptoms. These results highlight MAT's potential to revolutionize prenatal care and address the opioid crisis's public health impacts. However, it emphasizes the need for wider implementation and stronger policy support to ensure all affected pregnant women have access to these treatments. Continued research is needed to refine MAT protocols and understand long-term maternal and child outcomes. Integrating buprenorphine-based MAT in prenatal care is crucial for effectively managing opioid dependence during pregnancy, improving maternal health, and supporting broader public health efforts against the opioid epidemic.


Health services administration.

Health facilities -- Business management.

Opioids -- Pregnancy.

Prenatal care -- Effect of managed care on.

Buprenorphine -- Therapeutic use -- United States.