Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is an evidence-based intervention that, combined with counseling and behavioral therapies, can effectively treat opioid use disorders. However, MAT is underused due to multiple barriers. To increase access to MAT, the U.S. government awarded grants to local governments and nonprofit organizations to increase and retain the number of people receiving MAT. This brief examined differences in homelessness and employment outcomes between places that received a MAT grant and those that did not. They found that these grants did not reduce homelessness or unemployment rates in the places that received funding and concluded that their effectiveness may have been hampered by the relatively small scale of the program. The authors encourage increased government investment in MAT expansion, employment assistance, and housing programs.

Document Type

Research Brief


Opioid Crisis, Housing Stability, Medication Assisted Treatment


Health Policy | Mental and Social Health | Social Welfare | Substance Abuse and Addiction






The authors thank Alexandra Punch and Shannon Monnat for providing feedback and edits on a previous version of this brief. This brief is part of a series of briefs summarizing findings from a special issue of the ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science on the social and community consequences of the U.S. opioid crisis.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.