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Warm Hand-off Summits: Assessment Survey 

In advance of the summits, an assessment survey was conducted with key stakeholders to identify the greatest challenges to warm hand-off. The survey tool was developed based on information gathered during interviews with representatives from stakeholder groups. 

Respondents to the assessment survey identified the top five challenges across all regions in Pennsylvania as: 
  1. Scarce availability for admission to opioid use disorder (OUD) treatment from 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.
  2. Difficulty securing transportation to transfer to OUD treatment from 12 a.m. to 8 a.m.
  3. Improving relationships between hospitals and OUD treatment providers in the region.
  4. Complexities in insurance coverage and/or payment for services.
  5. Difficulty securing transportation to transfer to OUD treatment from 4 p.m. to 12 a.m.

While the following four issues remain challenges, they scored as the least challenging in each of the six regions:
  1. Perceived confidentiality issues with facilitating warm hand-off.
  2. Requirements for level of care assessments for OUD treatment in the emergency room are excessive.
  3. Scarce availability for admission to OUD treatment from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  4. Difficulty securing transportation to transfer to OUD treatment from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Respondents were asked at the end of the survey to list any other challenges or barriers for the seamless transfer of care for opioid overdose survivors from the emergency department to OUD treatment. Forty percent of respondents provided additional information. Statewide, the most frequent comments fell into the following categories (listed in order of frequency, starting with the highest):

  • Stigma
  • Refusal or ambivalence by patient or family
  • Availability or wait time for next step in warm hand-off process
  • Lack of available beds/level of care required
  • Mixed philosophies about standards of practice and medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
  • Lack of physician waivers
  • Limited availability of Certified Recovery Specialists


View survey information by region:
Northwest Meeting Challenges with Action
Northcentral Meeting Challenges with Action
Northeast Meeting Challenges with Action
Southwest Meeting Challenges with Action
Southcentral Meeting Challenges with Action
Southeast Meeting Challenges with Action