Health and Wellness
The province is providing more help for people struggling with opiate addiction in the Annapolis Valley.
Health and Wellness Minister Maureen MacDonald announced today, Oct. 12, that funding is being provided for methadone treatment to address the significant wait list in the region. Currently there are 27 people who could qualify for this program.
Starting next week, addiction service counsellors and local physicians will work with laboratory technicians and community pharmacists to provide shared care.
“This program will provide more access to treatment for people in need,” said Ms. MacDonald. “It focuses on health promotion and prevention, early identification and stabilization for people with opiate addictions. It’s a community-based solution designed to address the challenges this area is facing.”
The preliminary cost to deliver the program is $370,000 per year. The province’s electronic information management system will be updated to better track prescription use and the provincial opiate dependency working group will continue to identify and implement services needed in the community.
Annapolis Valley Health will deliver the program.
“We are booking appointments immediately,” said Janet Knox, president and CEO of Annapolis Valley Health. “Our clinic physicians will begin meeting with those assessed as early as Oct. 18. The program complements our current addictions services and provides a patient-centred approach that keeps clients well-connected to counsellors and our district family physicians for support.”
The program addresses another recommendation of the provincial prescription drug and overdose working group and will serve as a model for other areas of the province. Previous recommendations already addressed are 24/7 access to the prescription monitoring program and support for doctors interested in prescribing methadone.
More information about the new opiate addiction treatment program is available by calling 902-679-2392 or 902-825-6828.