Take-home methadone concerns lawmakers

State officials and methadone clinic operators defended the clinics' practice of giving drug addicts take-home doses of methadone, telling a legislative panel the doses help patients re-establish normal lives. Full Story
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K- Indianapolis

Raleigh, NC

#1 Sep 12, 2007
Methadone clinics are just legalized drug dealers. I have had 2 brother in laws on Methadone and they never have weaned them off the drug.One brother in law no longer takes it because he is dead. He was a long term user several years and they never weaned him off. My other brother in law is currently on it (legally). He has not even been in the program a year and they are giving him a 30 day supply. There seems to be very little checks and balances.Lawmakers need to ask for the records of those that have been weaned off and see what percentage it is. I'm sure it is little or none.
Pay Up

Elkhart, IN

#2 Sep 12, 2007
I don't know a lot about the methadone program, nor politics, but I have known what it's like to be an addict, and here's the way I see it. I don't think that when they came up with this alleged 'solution' to heroin addiction umpteen decades ago, that they were thinking long term, but that indeed is what it has become - long term. Why? Because it's been made easier to remain an addict, as long as you're addicted to something. My own brother, was addicted to heroin, is now on a methadone maintenance program. Medicaid pays for this. MEDICAID? I'm ashamed of him. This is a 47 year old, able-bodied intelligent man who works part time and is on MEDICAID? Unbelievable. Yet I, with two kids of my own, divorced, going to school and working toward a degree, AND working part time, has to beg and scratch for any kind of TEMPORARY help. It makes me sick.

Instead, they should have incorporated some kind of therapy (read: recovery program) which is FREE, into this 'substitution program' instead of this FREE government hand out, and the idea of letting an addict take his free drugs home is just plain STUPID!!!

The very idea of 'normal' has not been forced on these addicts by virtue of this 'ideal' If it's free, they should be made to come daily for their dose and that's it. Otherwise, wean yourselves off it!

Since: Sep 07

Mooresville

#3 Sep 12, 2007
Once again doctors seeing $$$$$$. They may as well be drug dealers to. I have a family member who also can't quit taking it and the life she lives is something that I never want to experience.
MOTHER TOO

Claypool, IN

#5 Sep 12, 2007
OH MY GOD! DO YOU MEAN WE INDIANA TAX PAYERS ARE PAYING FOR OUT OF STATE DRUG ADDICTS TO GET METHADONE TREATMENTS? NO WONDER TAXES ARE SKY HIGH! I DON'T CARE THAT THERE'S A TWO OR THREE YEAR WAITING LIST IN OTHER STATE'S, THAT'S THEIR PROBLEM. I'M TIRED OF SUPPORTING ALL THE DEADBEATS.
M- indianapolis

Chicago, IL

#6 Sep 12, 2007
I know of so called recovering herion addicts on methadone. They sell the methadone for other drugs. My son bought some from a person that had take home methadone and mixed with other pills it killed him.We was told without the methadone he would of lived. I agree the methadone clinics are no more than legal drug dealers.Do they really follow up on these patients ????
Matt

Louisville, KY

#8 Sep 12, 2007
Methadone is the primary drug in overdose deaths. I say give them as much as they want and let them kill themselves and get it over with already! These people are never cured, just drain our resources. Give them all they want, when they OD a lot of our other problems will be solved as well! It's a WIN WIN for everyone!
Yeah Right

Indianapolis, IN

#9 Sep 12, 2007
Are you kidding me - they are giving these addicts a "take home" version of this illegal drug?

I think that there's something wrong here - I read in a different article about a City Council banning people from verbal remarks during a debate - then you read about re-habs giving people drugs to take home. Oh, 14 day supplies at that. Crazy...well at least it's only happening at the state board (for now anyway).
Jerry Garcia

Indianapolis, IN

#10 Sep 12, 2007
The methadone clinic is nothing more than 'day camp for junkies'. It is a marketplace where addicts show up everyday and swap meds and make new connections to score. I know this first hand... you will see me at the clinic on 46th street every morning.
The clinic doesn't really give me a reason to quit using but it does give me a reson to quit breaking into your garage.
One of these days the dope will kill me and we can be out of each others misery.
kim in indiana

Evansville, IN

#11 Sep 12, 2007
I guess I was very ignorant of the "methodone procedure" until kids in my childrens highschool started dying of methodone overdoses. So being the concerned mom that I am I asked my teenagers, "HOW are these kids getting methodone, I thought they were required to go get it at the clinic" Well much to my saddened suprise, kids are overdosing on the methodone sent home with their parents and/or getting it from other people. I tend to agree that IF its a necessary drug then it needs to be more controlled, going back to the "clinic" setting instead of handing this legalized drug out to be distributed to innocent kids. We dont need to lose any more children to something that we can potentially control.
captain insano

Freetown, IN

#12 Sep 12, 2007
K- Indianapolis wrote:
Methadone clinics are just legalized drug dealers. I have had 2 brother in laws on Methadone and they never have weaned them off the drug.One brother in law no longer takes it because he is dead. He was a long term user several years and they never weaned him off. My other brother in law is currently on it (legally). He has not even been in the program a year and they are giving him a 30 day supply. There seems to be very little checks and balances.Lawmakers need to ask for the records of those that have been weaned off and see what percentage it is. I'm sure it is little or none.
No, the doctors prescribing pain killers are the legalized drug dealers.
Dubbyaa

Indianapolis, IN

#14 Sep 12, 2007
Only in America can you be a deadbeat and we'll take care of you. Ah,,,,,The land of opportunity!
Bummer1

United States

#15 Sep 12, 2007
this is the first I've heard of take home methadone. I guess our lawmakers will latch onto anything to avoid property tax reform and budget cuts. Hey, kill 2 birds with one stone. Cut Medicaid reimbursements for this, and cut any other funding for methadone clinics. No money means they go out of business, and lawmakers at least cut SOMETHING out of their budget.
Wisdom

Wixom, MI

#16 Sep 12, 2007
Someone tell me the incentive to keep addicts on methodone. Is it to divert the drug $ to a US pharma company , instead of it going to heroin dealers?
ndqt

South Bend, IN

#17 Sep 12, 2007
I know of a woman who has been making the daily trek to the methadone clinic for several years. Even during her pregnancy she never missed a day, although she missed several prenatal doctor appointments. Sometimes she holds down a job for a few weeks at a time, but she never misses that morning dose of methadone. The good news in this story is that the baby was born healthy and put up for adoption.
PplDoYourHW

AOL

#18 Sep 12, 2007
Wisdom wrote:
Someone tell me the incentive to keep addicts on methodone. Is it to divert the drug $ to a US pharma company , instead of it going to heroin dealers?
Here is the incentive: it's cheaper to give someone methadone maintenance treatment than it is to incarcerate someone for using drugs and to pay for HIV/AIDS medication or other meds for needle-bourne illnesses.
Indplswhatcenter

Noblesville, IN

#19 Sep 12, 2007
I was a "counselor" at ITC for many years...was hired right out of college with "NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY" to "Counsel" drug addicts. Don't you think counseling should require some type of post-college degree!?!? A master's maybe?! It was a joke! Great experience for me...no help to the patients though! My husband came to visit me at work once...was offered cocaine in the parking lot! Too funny!

“Victory is Mine”

Since: Jun 07

Greenwood

#20 Sep 12, 2007
Crossing state lines to use drugs on the backs of the over-taxed taxpayers. Maybe we should go ahead and send a bus down to KY to pick 'em up too.

This state is seriously MESSED UP.
Eastsider

Minneapolis, MN

#21 Sep 12, 2007
My kid is an addict. I have been in the 45th street clinic a few times and have talked to the people there. I want to believe they want to do well, however, I wouldn't take my worst enemy there. They get these people hooked on methadone and then they just leave themn to rot. There are no set treatment plans, time lines, goals or follow up. I feel most of the counselors are in over their heads. My kid is so hooked on the methadone he can not do anything else. I don't feel there is any incentive to get better. Somebody wrote "the clinic keeps me out of your garage", and I believe that is exactly what the clinic is for and not so much to get these people better. If the state is going to fund this program the clinic needs to be held accountable and held to the highest patient care standards, and the junkies need to be held accountable even more so.
Banker chick

United States

#22 Sep 12, 2007
MOTHER TOO wrote:
OH MY GOD! DO YOU MEAN WE INDIANA TAX PAYERS ARE PAYING FOR OUT OF STATE DRUG ADDICTS TO GET METHADONE TREATMENTS? NO WONDER TAXES ARE SKY HIGH! I DON'T CARE THAT THERE'S A TWO OR THREE YEAR WAITING LIST IN OTHER STATE'S, THAT'S THEIR PROBLEM. I'M TIRED OF SUPPORTING ALL THE DEADBEATS.
No, you're NOT paying for it. The patients of the clinic have to pay for their own doses. I don't know about other clinics, but the one in Indy charges $13 per dose. And as far as I know, medicaid/medicare won't pay for it. Also, I believe the local clinic doesn't give more than 6 days worth of take homes at a time, meaning you have to go once a week at least. You also get your take homes gradually and are drug tested many times during the reviews and after you get them. If you don't return ALL of the containers it's sent in, they take away your take homes and you have to start over again.
MethadonePatient

Indianapolis, IN

#23 Sep 12, 2007
Okay. I am a patient at the Indianapolis clinic on 46th street. I have a problem with these lawmakers trying to decide the direction my life will take for the next 85 weeks while I am weening off of the drug. I am sure no one has told anyone in that article that you are reccomended to wean off ONE milligram per week. My dose is 85 milligrams. Should I be required to wake-up every morning at 2:30 a.m.(yes, that is right, and I only live 10 minutes from the clinic!)for the next 85 weeks, when I have earned my take-homes by passing drug-test after drug-test, and bottle check after bottle check? Please, read on.

Both the AP, as well as the lawmakers quoted in the article obviously have no idea what they are talking about, because they have not been through the clinics, talked with the patients, or know how the program works at all. There are MANY safeguards and preventitive measures that the clinic takes when giving out take-home medications. For one, they drug test you at least every other week. If you fail, sorry, no take-homes for 6-months, at a minimum.

Two, for those who have take-homes, they are subject to random "bottle-checks", in which they are requirred to come in on a moments notice, and show the staff their bottles. If they are taken out-of-order, tampered with even slightly or the drug is simply missing from one of the bottles that is not supposed to be used yet - SORRY! No more take-homes. Also, you must see your counselor at least every three-weeks to a month. And they can test you, as well.

As far as take-home time periods, the first three-months at the clinic, you are going every day, not counting Sunday, to pick-up your dose at the clinic. Providing you pass all drug-tests, and aforementioned steps, after three-months, you get ONE take-home day, so with Sunday, that is actually two.

Then, wait THREE more months, and you get another, three-more, another, and then finally, after a YEAR you get a week's worth.

Obviously, it is hard work, and a lot of sacrifice, especially when, in order to get out of the clinic at a decent time, you have to get there at 3:00 a.m. to wait in line for the clinic to open at 5:00 a.m.

Also, this sacrifice doesn't even take into account the financial burdens placed on us patients -$375.50-a-month, and $4,562.50-a-year.

I am proud that I have been drug-free since I have been at the clinic, I have done it the right way, and I feel I deserve the right to my take-home. I can finally get the sleep I need, and not have to wake-up at 2:30 a.m. every morning just to get my dose.

These are just some of the reasons why take-homes are a good idea. You want addicts to have a meaningful, law-abiding and drug-free existence in society? Let them earn take-homes, and slowly wean off, while at the same time, contributing to society.

Bottom Line: STAY OUT of personel affairs, Mr. Man. Worry about real issues, not my personel struggles and rights.

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