"Evidence demonstrates that patients who receive longer-term treatment with medication for OUD have better treatment outcomes; they are also less likely to die from overdose if they return to use while on medication. In fact, people with OUD are up to 50 percent less likely to die when they are being treated long term with methadone or buprenorphine. Further research is needed to define an optimal treatment regimen for each of the available medications and to directly compare the effects of the three medications’ long-term use. Nonetheless, in spite of the need for more research, the body of evidence amassed over the past 50 years underscores the benefits of longterm retention on medication."
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Health and Medicine Division; Board on Health Sciences Policy; Committee on Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder; Mancher M, Leshner AI, editors. Medications for Opioid Use Disorder Save Lives. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); March 30, 2019.