Resource Guide: Improving Care Management for Individuals with Substance Use Disorder (SUD)

Policymakers and providers have increasingly recognized that successfully managing the needs of persons with substance use disorder – which can include multiple somatic and psychological comorbidities, unmet social needs, monetary and other barriers to accessing care, and stigma – requires uninterrupted, comprehensive, and easy to access clinical and social services.

This report provides an overview of relevant literature as well as interviews with selected experts and health plans, with the ultimate goal of providing plans seeking to improve SUD care management with practical guidance regarding:

  • Approaches to Care Management
  • Workforce
  • Member Engagement
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Data Sharing and Utilization
  • Overcoming Policy Barriers

ACAP plans and other MCOs are actively responding to the growing challenges and demands associated with SUD through CM programs that are coordinating care delivery across physical, mental health and substance use treatment. In addition, these plans are developing comprehensive, innovative approaches to dealing with the complex social and physical needs of SUD populations and are taking active steps to create diverse workforces that can serve the unique needs of each patient, appropriately utilize data resources, and identify other approaches to effectively provide integrated case management and care coordination for these complex patients.

Principal Investigator


Kelsey Shields
Principal Research Analyst
shields-kelsey@norc.org