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Methadone Clinics

 
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 960518
United States
06/04/2010 07:28 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
And as far was what OP said about money-issues, that I'm NOT going to defend.

But it's unfair to single out Methadone clinics as EVERY MEDICAL PROVIDER IN THIS WICKED COUNTRY is the exact same way.

EVERYWHERE you can go is just as obnoxious and inhuman, regarding money.

OH, YOU'RE SICK?

FUCK YOU, PAY ME.


God Ble$$ America.
Anonymous Coward
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Australia
06/04/2010 07:34 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.
Anonymous Coward
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06/04/2010 07:39 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
My friend's grown son in Austin is in this exact scenario...except he married well and isn't hurting for money. He's been on methadone for years and years too- his wife is getting fed up with it. Of course, the wife's wealthy parents know nothing, but my friend is really getting desperate. It is nothing but feeding another addiction, and it HAS to be harmful. Has to be. This stuff makes me sick- how can they say you've kicked when you're on methadone??


It does affect their bodies....
Watching the people in line everyday....makes their teeth brittle, and break, affects their kidneys, and liver...makes them gain weight for some reason.

I'm with ya...you haven't kicked if you are still on Methadone.
What's alarming, is that these places are protected by Law...
Employers cannot hold it agains anyone , use it for a reson to let them go....becuase they are "legally in treatment for thier addiction, and it would be discrimination'!
That means you Surgeon, Firefighters, Police, EMS workers, Nuclear Power plant operators....are all protected...they can be high as a kite, everyday, and it's legal....they can't be touched.
It's a frightening thought!
 Quoting: Woodsprite


But they possibly could be addicts anyway. What's the point of singling out Methadone?

I mean, personally, I thank GOD employers aren't allowed to access people's private medical information. Think about it. Where does that all end?

And what about the individual who's got their shit together thanks to the stability Methadone gives them?

But in the end I just hope no one's suggesting ANYONE'S private medical information should be accessible to anyone, ESPECIALLY employers.

Suppose they see you have a family history of Althziemer's and decide they don't to hire you because when you're middle-aged you possibly are going to come down wwith dementia...?
Anonymous Coward
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06/04/2010 07:52 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
So I am gathering that there is no actual treatment. No doctor, or whatever. Nobody reviewing the files of the individual folks that go in there so that they can help them kick the habit for good? Adress their specific needs? No meetings? No help in finding a job?

Basicly if a person gets in line, and has 15 bucks, they sign them up?
 Quoting: _Storm_


NO NO NO NO, it's HIGHLY regulated. HIGHLY.

Ha, I actually couldn't even get in the door. I went with my friend a few times (I let her stay with me for a few months because I was her ONLY non-drug using friend, it was a debacle, she was waiting to get into rehab but being held up by "drug-court", it was a nightmare, anyway) and, yeah, like OP said, they DO NOT let you in unless you're a patient.

And the clinics HAVE to be licensed by the state and have MD's underwriting all of the meds. There are multiple nurses dispensing meds. Every patient is assigned a counselor they have to see once a week. There were all these meetings she had to go to.

In THAT way it really wasn't all that bad. They gave her access to lots of resources while attempting to get her back on her feet.

But NO, it's not like you go in and getting a library card. It's HIGHLY regulated. It was almost like a fuckin'...military base...

I also want to add it was NOT a very..."good place". And the people mulling around the building, for the most part...well, you could tell they'd lived "hard lives". But no one was getting stabbed. No one was selling drugs.

I don't know. Drug addiction. It's a nightmare. Different things work for different people. But in my experience, the treatment OFFERED by Methadone clinics, when used correctly, seemed like...the lesser of many possible evils.

WHEN used correctly.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 937926
United Kingdom
06/04/2010 07:55 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Actually Methadone is an easy taper. Decrease 10 mg per week or per two weeks. Then when a low dose is achieved. Then go on every other day , then every third day. The key is slowly because of the physical changes that need to be unwound. Pills are easier to taper than daily fixed dose orally taken by a dispensing agent who has no interest in your getting off the train. a doctor

The psychology of addiction I have no idea how to extiguish!!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 975988


i hope to god your not a health professional.
safe reductions is actually 5% of dose reduced every ten to fourteen days, any more than that and the user may feel withdrawls and then look for an illicit top up which puts them back to square one..
The best detox is done by substituting methadone for heroin and then reducing the heroin intake for about four weeks and then goin g onto an ibogaine detox when the worst of the methadone is out of your system.
research ibogaine and you will be surprised at how well it restores an addicts frame of mind after detox and how quickly it removes opiates from the body.
Anonymous Coward
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United Kingdom
06/04/2010 08:02 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 991929

i agree with you, there is ongoing studies in the uk and holland which prescribe heroin instead of methadone, in holland you are made to take a job and then providing you keep the job you can get a dose to take anyway you prefer in the morning and in the evening, crime rates have reduced by 90% and they hold the jobs down.
in the uk heroin is being prescribed in a few places and the results are excellent but for some reason the government is dragging its heels in rolling out the better service across the country.
crime rates fall incredibly in those areas where heroin is prescribed and accidental overdose deaths are reduced drastically and people are not accidentally dying from methadone that is being improperly stored or given away/sold.
Anonymous Coward
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United States
06/04/2010 08:05 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Methadone has no euphoria when taken but the drug hangs on to the receptors longer and thus lessens early quick withdrawl. But upon sudden abstinence (not tapered) its withdrawl shows up later but is longer and harder. Respiratory depression (death) is there because addicts are trying to high when it just isn't there...hence overdose from a strong respiratory depressant. Narcan has a shorter half-life than methadone.


If it had no Euphoric effect...there would not be such an underground market for it.
I've actually seen how it effects people...and yes, they do get high.
I could see the differance in my friend when he came out, dosed, opposed to going in, almost sober.

I don't know about the effects on the brain...I'm no Neurologist...just an observer of the drug/system that is in place these days.
 Quoting: Woodsprite


Again- it's an issue of tolerance.

If you've never taken Methadone before I'm sure it knocks you on your ass. It is a very powerful narcotic.

But what makes it special (and therefore suited towards addiction-treatment) is that very soon (I'm not sure how long, I believe it's different for everyone- but from what my friends told me and what I've read it's within a week...?) you get a tolerance to it.

Most drugs are like this. Many drugs have to be taken for a certain amount of time before the benefits take effect.

SO, soon after the therapy starts, the patient becomes tolerant and therefore doesn't get high. And at the same time they're no longer DOPE-SICK (which is the main destructive force anyway).

It creates STABILITY.

It seems like, though, some patients still want to get high, and in their cases Methadone won't work. They're not ready.

But from what I've seen, people who hit ROCK BOTTOM and are tired and just want some stability can find it in Methadone, IF they use it correctly. And I've seen it done.
_Storm_

User ID: 362931
United States
06/04/2010 08:08 AM

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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.

i agree with you, there is ongoing studies in the uk and holland which prescribe heroin instead of methadone, in holland you are made to take a job and then providing you keep the job you can get a dose to take anyway you prefer in the morning and in the evening, crime rates have reduced by 90% and they hold the jobs down.
in the uk heroin is being prescribed in a few places and the results are excellent but for some reason the government is dragging its heels in rolling out the better service across the country.
crime rates fall incredibly in those areas where heroin is prescribed and accidental overdose deaths are reduced drastically and people are not accidentally dying from methadone that is being improperly stored or given away/sold.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 937926



That is very interesting. Thanks for posting.
Anonymous Coward
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United States
06/04/2010 08:13 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.

i agree with you, there is ongoing studies in the uk and holland which prescribe heroin instead of methadone, in holland you are made to take a job and then providing you keep the job you can get a dose to take anyway you prefer in the morning and in the evening, crime rates have reduced by 90% and they hold the jobs down.
in the uk heroin is being prescribed in a few places and the results are excellent but for some reason the government is dragging its heels in rolling out the better service across the country.
crime rates fall incredibly in those areas where heroin is prescribed and accidental overdose deaths are reduced drastically and people are not accidentally dying from methadone that is being improperly stored or given away/sold.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 937926


I'm curious- how is this heroin-prescribing done? I mean, they don't have to inject the heroin, do they? Or...do they?

And where does the government procure it? Is it made in a lab or do they grow it?
Anonymous Coward
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United States
06/04/2010 09:07 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
So I am gathering that there is no actual treatment. No doctor, or whatever. Nobody reviewing the files of the individual folks that go in there so that they can help them kick the habit for good? Adress their specific needs? No meetings? No help in finding a job?

Basicly if a person gets in line, and has 15 bucks, they sign them up?


NO NO NO NO, it's HIGHLY regulated. HIGHLY.

Ha, I actually couldn't even get in the door. I went with my friend a few times (I let her stay with me for a few months because I was her ONLY non-drug using friend, it was a debacle, she was waiting to get into rehab but being held up by "drug-court", it was a nightmare, anyway) and, yeah, like OP said, they DO NOT let you in unless you're a patient.

And the clinics HAVE to be licensed by the state and have MD's underwriting all of the meds. There are multiple nurses dispensing meds. Every patient is assigned a counselor they have to see once a week. There were all these meetings she had to go to.

In THAT way it really wasn't all that bad. They gave her access to lots of resources while attempting to get her back on her feet.

But NO, it's not like you go in and getting a library card. It's HIGHLY regulated. It was almost like a fuckin'...military base...

I also want to add it was NOT a very..."good place". And the people mulling around the building, for the most part...well, you could tell they'd lived "hard lives". But no one was getting stabbed. No one was selling drugs.

I don't know. Drug addiction. It's a nightmare. Different things work for different people. But in my experience, the treatment OFFERED by Methadone clinics, when used correctly, seemed like...the lesser of many possible evils.

WHEN used correctly.
 Quoting: "...Sing, I'll sway.

Every state must be different. Cause if you have Opiates is your system here, your on the gravy train
Anonymous Coward
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United States
06/04/2010 09:28 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Actually Methadone is an easy taper. Decrease 10 mg per week or per two weeks. Then when a low dose is achieved. Then go on every other day , then every third day. The key is slowly because of the physical changes that need to be unwound. Pills are easier to taper than daily fixed dose orally taken by a dispensing agent who has no interest in your getting off the train. a doctor

The psychology of addiction I have no idea how to extiguish!!



i hope to god your not a health professional.
safe reductions is actually 5% of dose reduced every ten to fourteen days, any more than that and the user may feel withdrawls and then look for an illicit top up which puts them back to square one..
The best detox is done by substituting methadone for heroin and then reducing the heroin intake for about four weeks and then goin g onto an ibogaine detox when the worst of the methadone is out of your system.
research ibogaine and you will be surprised at how well it restores an addicts frame of mind after detox and how quickly it removes opiates from the body.


Actually I am a board certified Anesthesiologist with special qualification in Pain Medicine and have taken courses to certify in addiction medicine. YOUR taper of Herion plus methadone.. good luck (where does one obtain Heroin in the US?). YOUR taper was not very different than my rule of thumb for lay people to grasp. It is THE method I use and successfully continue to use. This was assuming somone (without insight into the physiology of methadone) was on high doses of methadone. 60 mg or above. So your theory sounds great but in real world practice I have taken patients off of 600 mg of Oxycontin. I don't treat heroin addiction but if someone is interested in how to get these drugs this is how I do it.
Anonymous Coward
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United States
06/04/2010 09:30 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
ERROR: Get.. OFF.. these drugs that is how I do it.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 973140
United States
06/04/2010 10:15 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
I was an Addictions Counselor at a Methadone Clinic.

First of all, I neither approve or disapprove of a person's choice of methadone treatment. Because of this I do not disapprove of the treatment clinics can offer.

The following check list I'm commenting on is from this link--

[link to www.druginfo.adf.org.au]

Interesting that this article mainly mentions heroin. Far more of the clinics patients were addicted to prescription opiates than they were to heroin. Because of this I do believe that the entire medical profession needs to get their shit together regarding the dispensation of prescription opiates, especially regarding long term pain relief treatment.

...you haven't seen-it-all until you've done intake on a 17 year old addict in withdrawal. It's heartbreaking and enough to make you physically sick. This youngun' got her pills on the street, as did a number of patients. Even patients that had prescriptions from doctors still bought more on the street when their scripts ran out. This means that some people are written scripts for opiates whose need for them does not exceed their need for money. And, for one truly in pain, much less addicted, NOTHING is rarely any more important than dosing to stop pain; whether it's pain from injury or withdrawal, or both.

Wherein "all roads lead to Rome," methadone treatment and clinics are not at the heart of the body of issues. The medical profession and medical insurance shortcomings are "godheads" with regard to the body of the issue.

And then there are the addicts, themselves, the true center of the heart of the issue. Whether or not an addict becomes drug free is ultimately reliant on exactly what quality of life it is they're prepared to accept...be it good, bad, or ugly. Some people are just unable to give up the ghost of addiction.

Some comments regarding the following--


* people are less likely to use heroin that may be contaminated with other substances;

* methadone is taken orally, which makes it cleaner and safer than injecting heroin. This reduces the risks of sharing equipment and becoming infected with blood-borne viruses such as hepatitis B , hepatitis C (which may lead to long-term liver problems) and HIV - the virus causing AIDS;



Of course, these are indeed some pros of methadone treatment.


* the routine involved in methadone treatment encourages people to lead a balanced and stable lifestyle - including improved diet and sleep;


Such encouragement was the main focus of being a counselor. It was this part of the job I so loved. Not all patients cared about an enhanced quality of life, but those who did? It was a joy to work with them.


* people are less stressed, as they do not have to worry about where their next 'hit' of heroin is coming from;

* methadone lasts longer in the body than heroin, so it only has to be taken once a day;



While including script opiates, these two points were excitedly commented on by new patients.

Drug seeking behavior can be, as you might imagine, more than just a little inter-personally degrading. For some, their behavior while using was one of the largest hurdles to overcome. Their shame could be deep and wide in scope.

Given they had daily treatment that actually lasted the full day they were freed up from the cage that is drug seeking behavior.

THIS is a huge step toward recovery counseling having a snowballs chance in hell to work.



* it allows people to handle the withdrawal process with less discomfort;


Once the correct dose is achieved and psychological and social issues are addressed during maintenance, then a incremental dose reduction is initiated. Where I worked this never started before a three months maintenance period, and most often not before a six month period. The dose reductions are in extremely small increments, with frequency of reduction likely no more than monthly if a patient isn't to feel some kind of physical withdrawal symptom...and even then, there's still some fright or fight discomfort, bio-emotional issues wherein the patient is just plain ole scared they'll fall prey to their own bodies, and fail. This is a classic anxiety response from a patient.


* criminal activities conducted to obtain illegal drugs are reduced;


I haven't seen stats on how much methadone treatment reduces criminal activity, but I fully doubt it's remarkable within the scope of drug related crime.


* it helps people cut their connections with the drug scene;


And this made me laugh, sardonically. There's only a smidgen of value in this statement. The only thing that does this is the person, themselves. It was like attempting to pull teeth out of a clenched jaw trying to get patients to see the necessitate value in changing their social group.


* it's cheaper - although there is usually a dispensing fee with methadone, this is relatively cheap compared to the cost of illicit drug use (the recommended dosage fee at the time of writing this information was $7.50, although this amount may vary between dispensers); and

* under certain conditions, take-away doses of methadone are also available, which help clients return to a more stable lifestyle. To be eligible, clients must meet the criteria as outlined by the state/territory health department as well as those of the methadone prescriber. Some of these criteria include family commitments, illness and travelling long distances.



Street drugs and abused prescriptions are far more expensive than methadone, and in more ways than one - the ways of mind, body, and spirit.

Also, there were many patients who had take home doses and didn't have to come to the clinic every single day. Granted, they had to have a good history with their recovery program in order to do so, but they could. Maybe it's not all clinics policy to allow for this, but it was in the one where I worked.

And although I didn't work there long I learned a lot while there. I quit because it was an extremely hostile environment; not only some of the patients, it was my fellow counselors, too. I was the only one who had no personal opiate addiction history and this made me kind of like a mark. I was considered not only as a "marshmallow," but they also thought that my lack of experience made me ineffectual as a counselor.

At the end of my time there--within four days I had a chair thrown at me by a patient who had too many dirty UAs and was being taken off the program, had found a letter on my desk from a patient with organic brain damage (she not very stable) detailing 10 different ways she was going to kill me, and got told "little girl, you don't know what you're talking about" by one of my peer counselors in a patient review about one of my patients (the 17 year old). The later was the straw that broke the camels back, and I quit.

Ahem, methadone clinics are living, breathing, soap operas. Seriously. It's terribly ridiculous, and I've never seen anything like it in my life.

Even so, even for the myriad of complications that can arise, there are some who are helped. I witnessed some wonderful breakthroughs that patients had because they had this alternative treatment.

Methadone is not a cure nor cure-all for addiction, but it can be an effective and affective stepping stone in one's recovery from opiate addiction.

The only cure for addiction comes from within a person.

While considering all opiates as an "evil," proper application of methadone treatment and addictions counseling is a lesser of the many stigmatic evils. This I personally believe to be true.

It's not for all and the success rate is not remarkably high, but for those it does work for - after a lot of hard work - they do have a new lease on life.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 937926
United Kingdom
06/04/2010 10:39 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Actually Methadone is an easy taper. Decrease 10 mg per week or per two weeks. Then when a low dose is achieved. Then go on every other day , then every third day. The key is slowly because of the physical changes that need to be unwound. Pills are easier to taper than daily fixed dose orally taken by a dispensing agent who has no interest in your getting off the train. a doctor

The psychology of addiction I have no idea how to extiguish!!



i hope to god your not a health professional.
safe reductions is actually 5% of dose reduced every ten to fourteen days, any more than that and the user may feel withdrawls and then look for an illicit top up which puts them back to square one..
The best detox is done by substituting methadone for heroin and then reducing the heroin intake for about four weeks and then goin g onto an ibogaine detox when the worst of the methadone is out of your system.
research ibogaine and you will be surprised at how well it restores an addicts frame of mind after detox and how quickly it removes opiates from the body.


Actually I am a board certified Anesthesiologist with special qualification in Pain Medicine and have taken courses to certify in addiction medicine. YOUR taper of Herion plus methadone.. good luck (where does one obtain Heroin in the US?). YOUR taper was not very different than my rule of thumb for lay people to grasp. It is THE method I use and successfully continue to use. This was assuming somone (without insight into the physiology of methadone) was on high doses of methadone. 60 mg or above. So your theory sounds great but in real world practice I have taken patients off of 600 mg of Oxycontin. I don't treat heroin addiction but if someone is interested in how to get these drugs this is how I do it.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 892661


I was talking about heroin users and there detoxes im not qualified to talk about any other type of opiate addiction and subsequent detox.
Heroin users know where to find heroin, its too easy believe me.
if you had read my post properly i wasnt advocating using both heroin and methadone together but to get out of the never ending methadone waltz (to the clinic to the chemist to the doctor) by substituting methadone with a tapered heroin reduction and after four weeks and when you are using no more than 0.2 of a gram a day or less hopefully,(0.2 is very little a ten bag in the uk a day) then consider an ibogaine detox.
I fervently believe that ibogaine is the missing link in opiate recovery as testimonials from long term hardened addicts state that they feel "it saved my life after many attempts i am now truly clean and enjoying it" also that "their mind has been reset to a condition as it was before the addiction began".
very powerful words and emotions, not surprisingly it is banned in the us you have to go to mexico for treatment.
go to youtube and look up ibogaine treatment/testimonials, eye opening.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 937926
United Kingdom
06/04/2010 10:52 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
I was an Addictions Counselor at a Methadone Clinic.

Some comments regarding the following--


* criminal activities conducted to obtain illegal drugs are reduced;


I haven't seen stats on how much methadone treatment reduces criminal activity, but I fully doubt it's remarkable within the scope of drug related crime.

 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 973140



id like to say that methadone as a short term relief mechanism is great, i also know from experience of using it on and off for ten plus years in different programs around the country that people tend to carry on commiting crime and still tend to use "on top" either rarely or regularly very few people will stop using altogether.
it does reduce crime people are content to wait until they have money rather than having to get money, big difference.

I think Heroin prescription is the way forward it will reduce crime in astonishing numbers according to the ongoing research, heroin users are just that heroin users and treating them with a substance they dont like or that will create its own set of problems seems stupid.
why create a user with a dual dependancy problem just because they have a predilection for heroin?.
it doersnt happen with any other substance i can think of so why with heroin.
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 12:32 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
I've had 2 friends who were IV drug users and known a few others who got into trouble with pills. Methadone is DEFINITELY NOT a "cure", but, managed correctly, it can really sort of "chill someone the fuck out".

Because, really, WHEN are drug addicts the MOST dangerous? When they're dope-sick. NOT when they're high. In fact, there really AREN'T too many creatures on this planet LESS lethal than a junkie who's dozing off.

A house plant is more of a physical threat. Literally.

It's when they're DOPE-SICK that people rob, assault, mug, steal, commit crimes. My friend described it as "battery acid seeping through the pores" of his skin.

Both of my IV-drug using friends (these incidents happened years apart) were able to kick with the HELP of methadone because it levelled their withdawal-symptoms off. And also methadone, though powerful, is a drug you get tolerant to REAL QUICK. Hence, why it's good for drug managment- because after a few doses you really can't get high anymore.

Not if you're being properly prescribed.

THAT'S the key though. IF everything's "proper". One of my friends confessed to still abusing Xanax during her first stint on Methadone. So it's tricky.

I know these places have very stringent drug testing policies and failing tests can get you into trouble.

BASICALLY, I see it like insulin. If you see addiction as a disease (which it is) then Methadone is a medication someone has to take to MANAGE its symptoms. Like insulin for diabetics. And if they have to be on Methadone for life, then so be it.

As long as it keeps them from getting high and/or dope-sick it gives them a chance at a normal life. And that's all that really matters.

But in the end no one can be helped if they don't help themselves. It's complicated.
 Quoting: "...Sing, I'll sway.



I hear what you are sayin'...and I agree with just about all of it....
My problem is that they are representing themselves as a "Treatment".....as in..it is to help people quit.
Not a place for people that want to be lifetime junkies, and be maintained.
I could't agree with you more about dope sickness causing criminal behaviour...I've seen it happen to all addicts to so degree, during the course of their addiction...to whatever substance.
I just think what I witnessed going down wasn't cool at all.
It's a terrible thought that there is no hope for a 16 yr. old...that they will never live a life without the addiction to a drug.
Seems to me that the Clinics need to be represented as "there is no other way...this is for people that are chronically addicted"
Instead of what they are doing.

Sitting there, day after day watching it all...there is something drastically wrong with their system.
My friend told me about 1 of the Counselors that used to work there...how he had quit, because of the stuff I'm talking about in my original post.
Said he didn't feel like a Counselor, just a drug dealer...because they really weren't concerned with helping people quit.
He went to an inpatient Treatment Center to work.

I just think if they were truly a Treatment Center..then when the person first comes in..whatever their dose is...get them stable, then start decreasing their doses.
That isn't the way it is now...that's why people keep upping their doses as they get used to it.
That's why there are many people that are there, like my friend...went there as teens, and have been there for 15 years.
Woodsprite  (OP)

User ID: 992015
United States
06/04/2010 12:37 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
You are not supposed to stay on it forever, there is a program to start you on it and eventually slowly get you off.
But it is for a period of time, and stopping before the program is finished statistics show you will be back on heroin in no time at all.
I don't know whether that is the case at the place you are speaking of but that is how it is meant to be.
A program you need to finish.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 988584



That's what I always thought too, about Methadone Clinics...that it was a program set up to help people kick the addiction to Opiates.
I had no idea the reality of, before I went thru watching day, after day for 4 months..seeing what my friend went thru, trying to get out of there.
I couldn't believe it.
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 12:41 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
And as far was what OP said about money-issues, that I'm NOT going to defend.

But it's unfair to single out Methadone clinics as EVERY MEDICAL PROVIDER IN THIS WICKED COUNTRY is the exact same way.

EVERYWHERE you can go is just as obnoxious and inhuman, regarding money.

OH, YOU'RE SICK?

FUCK YOU, PAY ME.


God Ble$$ America.
 Quoting: "...Sing, I'll sway.


My problem with the Clinic, is that they KNOW PEOPLE CAN DIE that day, if they don't get their dose...and they will still risk it over a paltry $.50
That just isn't right...especially since they work to hard to keep people coming back there every day.

LOL..don't get me started on the rest of the Medical industry...I have lots to say about them too...
Let's just stick with the Methadone Clinics, and how they are "treating their patients"... ;)
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 12:43 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 991929


MONEY!..pure and simple...it's all about the money!
From the pharmacutical company that makes it...down to the "Clinics" that are staffed to dispense it!
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 12:54 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
My friend's grown son in Austin is in this exact scenario...except he married well and isn't hurting for money. He's been on methadone for years and years too- his wife is getting fed up with it. Of course, the wife's wealthy parents know nothing, but my friend is really getting desperate. It is nothing but feeding another addiction, and it HAS to be harmful. Has to be. This stuff makes me sick- how can they say you've kicked when you're on methadone??


It does affect their bodies....
Watching the people in line everyday....makes their teeth brittle, and break, affects their kidneys, and liver...makes them gain weight for some reason.

I'm with ya...you haven't kicked if you are still on Methadone.
What's alarming, is that these places are protected by Law...
Employers cannot hold it agains anyone , use it for a reson to let them go....becuase they are "legally in treatment for thier addiction, and it would be discrimination'!
That means you Surgeon, Firefighters, Police, EMS workers, Nuclear Power plant operators....are all protected...they can be high as a kite, everyday, and it's legal....they can't be touched.
It's a frightening thought!


But they possibly could be addicts anyway. What's the point of singling out Methadone?

I mean, personally, I thank GOD employers aren't allowed to access people's private medical information. Think about it. Where does that all end?

And what about the individual who's got their shit together thanks to the stability Methadone gives them?

But in the end I just hope no one's suggesting ANYONE'S private medical information should be accessible to anyone, ESPECIALLY employers.

Suppose they see you have a family history of Althziemer's and decide they don't to hire you because when you're middle-aged you possibly are going to come down wwith dementia...?
 Quoting: "...Sing, I'll sway.


I don't think ALL MEDICAL RECORDS should be available .
I'm just sayiing, I don't want a Surgeon that is on Methadone cutting on my body..or the guy that is in charge of running the Nuclear Power plant, because it could kill lots of people...what about Air Traffic Controllers?!
I think there should be a limt when it comes to who should know, and who can't...and also let those positions be filled by someone that is clear headed.
When it comes to a safety issue...there needs to be disclosure about being on Methadone.
Just an example of what I'm talking about...let's say that there is an ambulance driver that gets hooked on opiats, and they go to a Methadone Clinic for "Treatment"... Don't you think their employer should have the right to say." Hey, I'm sorry, but until you are off the opaites, you can't work here".
Right now, that can't happen...the employer probably will never know....and there is an ambulance driver out there on Methadone.
Do you want to be picked up while you are having a heart attack by someone like this?
Even if the employer finds out...they still cannot tell the Driver they can't work while on Methadone...they can be sued if they do, and they will lose.
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 12:58 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Why the hell don't they just keep them on controlled doses of heroin. It's less addictive for sure. I've known people on Methadone and it's like 5 times as addictive as Heroin.

I don't understand their reasoning.

i agree with you, there is ongoing studies in the uk and holland which prescribe heroin instead of methadone, in holland you are made to take a job and then providing you keep the job you can get a dose to take anyway you prefer in the morning and in the evening, crime rates have reduced by 90% and they hold the jobs down.
in the uk heroin is being prescribed in a few places and the results are excellent but for some reason the government is dragging its heels in rolling out the better service across the country.
crime rates fall incredibly in those areas where heroin is prescribed and accidental overdose deaths are reduced drastically and people are not accidentally dying from methadone that is being improperly stored or given away/sold.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 937926


Sounds like you guys have a much better system for helping these people than we do here.
We need something better.
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 01:04 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Methadone has no euphoria when taken but the drug hangs on to the receptors longer and thus lessens early quick withdrawl. But upon sudden abstinence (not tapered) its withdrawl shows up later but is longer and harder. Respiratory depression (death) is there because addicts are trying to high when it just isn't there...hence overdose from a strong respiratory depressant. Narcan has a shorter half-life than methadone.


If it had no Euphoric effect...there would not be such an underground market for it.
I've actually seen how it effects people...and yes, they do get high.
I could see the differance in my friend when he came out, dosed, opposed to going in, almost sober.

I don't know about the effects on the brain...I'm no Neurologist...just an observer of the drug/system that is in place these days.


Again- it's an issue of tolerance.

If you've never taken Methadone before I'm sure it knocks you on your ass. It is a very powerful narcotic.

But what makes it special (and therefore suited towards addiction-treatment) is that very soon (I'm not sure how long, I believe it's different for everyone- but from what my friends told me and what I've read it's within a week...?) you get a tolerance to it.

Most drugs are like this. Many drugs have to be taken for a certain amount of time before the benefits take effect.

SO, soon after the therapy starts, the patient becomes tolerant and therefore doesn't get high. And at the same time they're no longer DOPE-SICK (which is the main destructive force anyway).

It creates STABILITY.

It seems like, though, some patients still want to get high, and in their cases Methadone won't work. They're not ready.

But from what I've seen, people who hit ROCK BOTTOM and are tired and just want some stability can find it in Methadone, IF they use it correctly. And I've seen it done.
 Quoting: "...Sing, I'll sway.


I've yet to meet anyone that takes Methadone, that also dosen't take other stuff like Benzo's too.

Even though they say that they are "regulated" , the people find ways around getting caught...they know when they are gonna be screened...and it's rare for them to do a pop-urine test on people.

That's why I think if it's a true "Treatment"...then never up the initial dose that they start with.
The only way to go should be down.
Woodsprite  (OP)

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06/04/2010 01:15 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
I was an Addictions Counselor at a Methadone Clinic.

First of all, I neither approve or disapprove of a person's choice of methadone treatment. Because of this I do not disapprove of the treatment clinics can offer.

The following check list I'm commenting on is from this link--

[link to www.druginfo.adf.org.au]

Interesting that this article mainly mentions heroin. Far more of the clinics patients were addicted to prescription opiates than they were to heroin. Because of this I do believe that the entire medical profession needs to get their shit together regarding the dispensation of prescription opiates, especially regarding long term pain relief treatment.

...you haven't seen-it-all until you've done intake on a 17 year old addict in withdrawal. It's heartbreaking and enough to make you physically sick. This youngun' got her pills on the street, as did a number of patients. Even patients that had prescriptions from doctors still bought more on the street when their scripts ran out. This means that some people are written scripts for opiates whose need for them does not exceed their need for money. And, for one truly in pain, much less addicted, NOTHING is rarely any more important than dosing to stop pain; whether it's pain from injury or withdrawal, or both.

Wherein "all roads lead to Rome," methadone treatment and clinics are not at the heart of the body of issues. The medical profession and medical insurance shortcomings are "godheads" with regard to the body of the issue.

And then there are the addicts, themselves, the true center of the heart of the issue. Whether or not an addict becomes drug free is ultimately reliant on exactly what quality of life it is they're prepared to accept...be it good, bad, or ugly. Some people are just unable to give up the ghost of addiction.

Some comments regarding the following--


* people are less likely to use heroin that may be contaminated with other substances;

* methadone is taken orally, which makes it cleaner and safer than injecting heroin. This reduces the risks of sharing equipment and becoming infected with blood-borne viruses such as hepatitis B , hepatitis C (which may lead to long-term liver problems) and HIV - the virus causing AIDS;



Of course, these are indeed some pros of methadone treatment.


* the routine involved in methadone treatment encourages people to lead a balanced and stable lifestyle - including improved diet and sleep;


Such encouragement was the main focus of being a counselor. It was this part of the job I so loved. Not all patients cared about an enhanced quality of life, but those who did? It was a joy to work with them.


* people are less stressed, as they do not have to worry about where their next 'hit' of heroin is coming from;

* methadone lasts longer in the body than heroin, so it only has to be taken once a day;



While including script opiates, these two points were excitedly commented on by new patients.

Drug seeking behavior can be, as you might imagine, more than just a little inter-personally degrading. For some, their behavior while using was one of the largest hurdles to overcome. Their shame could be deep and wide in scope.

Given they had daily treatment that actually lasted the full day they were freed up from the cage that is drug seeking behavior.

THIS is a huge step toward recovery counseling having a snowballs chance in hell to work.



* it allows people to handle the withdrawal process with less discomfort;


Once the correct dose is achieved and psychological and social issues are addressed during maintenance, then a incremental dose reduction is initiated. Where I worked this never started before a three months maintenance period, and most often not before a six month period. The dose reductions are in extremely small increments, with frequency of reduction likely no more than monthly if a patient isn't to feel some kind of physical withdrawal symptom...and even then, there's still some fright or fight discomfort, bio-emotional issues wherein the patient is just plain ole scared they'll fall prey to their own bodies, and fail. This is a classic anxiety response from a patient.


* criminal activities conducted to obtain illegal drugs are reduced;


I haven't seen stats on how much methadone treatment reduces criminal activity, but I fully doubt it's remarkable within the scope of drug related crime.


* it helps people cut their connections with the drug scene;


And this made me laugh, sardonically. There's only a smidgen of value in this statement. The only thing that does this is the person, themselves. It was like attempting to pull teeth out of a clenched jaw trying to get patients to see the necessitate value in changing their social group.


* it's cheaper - although there is usually a dispensing fee with methadone, this is relatively cheap compared to the cost of illicit drug use (the recommended dosage fee at the time of writing this information was $7.50, although this amount may vary between dispensers); and

* under certain conditions, take-away doses of methadone are also available, which help clients return to a more stable lifestyle. To be eligible, clients must meet the criteria as outlined by the state/territory health department as well as those of the methadone prescriber. Some of these criteria include family commitments, illness and travelling long distances.



Street drugs and abused prescriptions are far more expensive than methadone, and in more ways than one - the ways of mind, body, and spirit.

Also, there were many patients who had take home doses and didn't have to come to the clinic every single day. Granted, they had to have a good history with their recovery program in order to do so, but they could. Maybe it's not all clinics policy to allow for this, but it was in the one where I worked.

And although I didn't work there long I learned a lot while there. I quit because it was an extremely hostile environment; not only some of the patients, it was my fellow counselors, too. I was the only one who had no personal opiate addiction history and this made me kind of like a mark. I was considered not only as a "marshmallow," but they also thought that my lack of experience made me ineffectual as a counselor.

At the end of my time there--within four days I had a chair thrown at me by a patient who had too many dirty UAs and was being taken off the program, had found a letter on my desk from a patient with organic brain damage (she not very stable) detailing 10 different ways she was going to kill me, and got told "little girl, you don't know what you're talking about" by one of my peer counselors in a patient review about one of my patients (the 17 year old). The later was the straw that broke the camels back, and I quit.

Ahem, methadone clinics are living, breathing, soap operas. Seriously. It's terribly ridiculous, and I've never seen anything like it in my life.

Even so, even for the myriad of complications that can arise, there are some who are helped. I witnessed some wonderful breakthroughs that patients had because they had this alternative treatment.

Methadone is not a cure nor cure-all for addiction, but it can be an effective and affective stepping stone in one's recovery from opiate addiction.

The only cure for addiction comes from within a person.

While considering all opiates as an "evil," proper application of methadone treatment and addictions counseling is a lesser of the many stigmatic evils. This I personally believe to be true.

It's not for all and the success rate is not remarkably high, but for those it does work for - after a lot of hard work - they do have a new lease on life.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 973140


Thanks for your post... :)
It is nice to hear that there was atleast someone that cared, and tried to make a diffrance.
Maybe all Clinics aren't the way the 1 I saw was.....it would be nice to think that there are some where it isn't the policy to just keep upping peoples doses, year after year.
Anonymous Coward
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06/04/2010 02:28 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Being an ex junkie I can say most of my dealers were on Methadone so cutting contacts idea is wrong. Also the best place to sell pills and buy them is where near the clinic a lot of the methadone patients take Kolopin because it enhances the methadone. I know of very few people that have kicked using it. Best off going to a detox center and being off off it for good. I have been free of heroin for 4 long years. It was a struggle but worth it.
tomasgod1

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02/11/2011 06:58 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Methadone is to save their life.
Although its a miserable existence, and one can OD on it if they drink enough, although death is less likely.
Its safer than shooting heroin as the chances of survival doing that long term are very low.


Sorry, but from what I've seen firsthand...it isn't saving anyone!
All it does is slowly kill people!
I've seen more people OD on herione and other opiates...and survive...than I've ever seen happen with Methadone.
Seems like it kills quicker...there is no time to try and give them a shot to counteract the Methadone.
 Quoting: Woodsprite

You don't have to be sorry, you haven't done anything to me to be sorry for.
For you to be saying this then you must not have a clue how dangerous injecting heroin is.
Most people who do it, can be saved if they OD, but the chances of them being near people who will get them help are very low.
Because of the impulsive nature of heroin, and the fact its illegal, most people die in some back alley or in some bushes and no one even finds them for days.
Drinking anything instead of injecting it is much safer as you tend to puke most of it up before you OD to much.
Once its injected, thats it, if its too much, your gone.
You obviously don't understand the difference between being sick and being in the morgue.
Many addicts are only one more hit away from death, they just cant exist anymore on their current level, they need more to stop from getting sick.
Methadone is a viable option for those who wish to not die this week and possibly eventually get clean.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 988584

I am sorry but you are only deluding yourself if you believe that. you will never be clean as long as you are drinking methadone. There is not a "get clean" option with methadone tx., the idea is a legal replacement drug that replaces one narotic without a "high" for the one that did give an illegal "high", what a bummer! There is no reduction in dosage, but rather a maintenance therapy. This "maintenance therapy is sold to the user as a "end all" to the problem. The Addict is told that they will surely die without this maintenance therapy, which IS A LIE!!!! "Graual opiate reduction therapy", is the key to surviving opiate addiction...period....end of story!!!!!

Take it or leave it folks...use your God given brain, and get a clue!
_______

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BellaLegosi
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03/18/2015 10:24 AM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Now with ObamaCare Methadone is pretty much 100% covered by state health/federal health plans. The only thing that isn't covered are the cost of the "take home" bottles that cost $3.00 (Clinics are usually closed on Sundays, so people dose and get a Sunday dose to take home. Also, if you have been a "good" addict; 'clean' UA's, make all your meetings; people can be rewarded with more take home days

Methadone can be dispensed in a maintenance/rehab setting or it can be prescribed by private physicians for pain management (pills). When methadone is given as pain management or done privately, chances are state and private health insurance will not cover the cost of the Rx/pills.

The program I joined wasn't easy and they started me off on doses that were way too low. I experienced some sickness transitioning from illicit Rx drugs to methadone. They will not increase doses on demand and you are told if you don't like it than there are other clinics. The clinic I go to is taking it slow with me because I have never gone thru a drug rehab. That is a mark against anyone who wants to join. They would rather have those who have been thru the program and those who have been thru some rehab are the ones who start off with doses ranging from 35mg to 190mg (I know one guy who takes 190mg a day) Pregnant women are literally fast tracked thru and their doses are normally doubled and upped thru out the pregnancy. They are told that the methadone may not cause birth defects, but the child will be born addicted and will have to stay at the hospital so that it can be weened off methadone with morphine.

I have taken it before. I was on it for nearly two years, self medicating while I worked (not everyone nods). You do get a high at first, but you build a tolerance quickly. Example: I started on 10mg. The next day I was able to up it to 15mg. I stay at this for 3 days, then it gets upped 5mg more. After that it is every 5 days. I am an addict who needs at least 40mg to stay from getting sick.

The clinics also tend to not tell you how this all works either. I have noticed that not one person has laid out what this clinic does like I have above. I wish I had and that is why I am writing this now, even tho this thread is like 5 years old.

Nobody goes into this life wanting to be like Anna Nicole or thinking "Gee that nodding shit looks fun!" I got into it due to medical problems that were not addressed due to not having any medical coverage. ERs become a clinic and more times than any those who hit up ERs are in pain or in withdrawal. I would say that more people are in methadone clinics now for prescription abuse (that lead to heroin). There are some old timers, but most of them are in the 18-30ish age range. I have heard from multiple people that they have been to up to 4 different clinics. Like, they fuck up and get kicked out of one and join another. Or if they are not getting what they want they leave to join another. Recently, this has been the trend due to methadone being covered by state/federal health plans.

I have seen better results from Suboxone. It doesn't trigger the "high" opiates or methadone causes and it doesnt have nearly the amount of relapse and those who get off it find it easier and longer lasting than methadone. I would have loved to do suboxone, but my health plan will not cover it and I can not afford the $700+ a month. However, the federal government has approved suboxone use to get off the methadone.

I hope what I have written here helps with some understanding about this or helps if anyone is thinking of joining.
Anonymous Coward
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10/20/2016 10:51 PM
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Re: Methadone Clinics
Methadone is not a treatment and clinics do not operate as treatment either. It is maintenance. Pure and simple. For a fee they provide a substance and it is your choice to take it. I was in this for a year. First time I sought any help. The environment and attitudes of those who work and who are clients is not very helpful. They do require clients to attend group sessions weekly. Although if you are a "medical" patient you are normally exempt from having to attend. But it really is up to the person if this is what they want to do until they get "take homes" or finally quit. Some places have people who encourage you to stop while others straight enable and profit. But make no mistake. Those clinics are in the business of maintaining an addiction, not the real treatment of it. If they were there would be no loop hole and time limits.
Anonymous Coward
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10/20/2016 11:30 PM
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Former Methadone clinic patient here...

I took Methadone for five years and tapered off slowly over the course of 11 months. It's not an easy drug to come off of. I tapered all the way down to 2mg and jumped off and I still endured sleepless nights and restless legs for over a month, but it can be done!

Clinics are hyper-regulated and most of the addicts at the clinic have a hard time following rules so they fail and subsequently have to wait in line every day for their meds. I had a month of takehomes so I only had to stand in line once a month, attend a counseling session and one group, again once a month.

The doctor's name at my clinic: Dr. Steven Segal. Heh.

Anyway, Methadone worked for me and I put in the hard work to get off of it. One benefit of Methadone (and dope for that matter) is its ability to squash hardcore allergies. Hell, I never even caught the flu or other illnesses on the stuff. It's awesome for depression too, IMO. Lastly, it would be a great drug for alcoholics looking to quit drinking; however, not recommended as starting a dependency on Methadone to quit drinking just doesn't make sense...haha.
Anonymous Coward
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10/21/2016 12:21 AM
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Anonymous Coward
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03/13/2020 01:09 AM
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I am currently a client at a large clinic in Portland. They dont really call it treatment, its really considered "harm reduction". I have been on it for 4 years. Because of an epilepsy disorder I haven't been able to get one doctor to talk to eachother and get me off this shit!

As for the Covid19? Nothing has changed! No e of the staff or nurses use gloves or masks. Clients are obligated to attend 2 one hour groups per day. These gr6ojps are 30 people max, sitting in a circle, packed in like sardines! There are some very immune and lung compromise people that go here. This clinic also has about 1000 or more. So yeah strange days have found us!





GLP