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What a Good Methadone Clinic Looks Like

Posted on :  January 28th, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Even though methadone clinics generally do the same thing – treat patients with opioid addictions, they do not all do it the same way. There are some methadone clinics that are very good at treating patients and other that fall short. The strong, successful clinics have many of the same qualities and the weak clinics lack those qualities.

Qualities of a Successful Clinic

While patient success is one of the definitions of a strong clinic, there are several other factors that define the strong clinic. The first is communication, especially between the employees from the medical employees to the counseling and administrative employees. When communication is strong and a clinic is successful, there will be very little turnover among the staff. Employees, especially the counseling staff has low levels of stress because their ratios are low. The physicians and patients understand the standards for dosing because they are based on appropriate guidelines. Top clinics also help patients move back into their communities, too.

Communication within the Staff

When clinics have strong communication between employees, they are better prepared to treat their patients. Strong communication occurs when the physicians, counseling staff, and administrative staff talk about the patients and their recovery. Regular conversations keep the staff on the same page so they all know what is happening and what the next steps happen to be. The staff can also talk about problems they foresee so that the entire staff is ready to deal with them when they arise.

Solving Problems as a Team

The purpose of the regular staff conversations is not to gossip or complain about the patients. It is to help the patients be successful in their treatment programs. The physicians and counselors can talk about progress or lack thereof and what can be done to make changes. Physicians can discuss medical concerns and counselors can discuss psychological concerns so that meds can be adjusted based on withdrawal symptoms, signs of depression, or other issues.

Experienced and Professional Staff

The staff should have experience working with patients who are being treated with methadone. All of our counselors and professionals believe in the process of treating heroin addiction with methadone and they will keep patients feeling positively about their treatment. Weak treatment centers often hire inexperienced professionals or those think that methadone does not and will not work. Without the belief in methadone and the experience of working with patients fighting addiction, the only people who suffer are the patients, which can result in devastating setbacks.

Keep Caseloads Manageable

Caseloads are important considerations for maintaining good staff members. When counselors and physicians in methadone clinics are overburdened with too many patients, there is not anything that keeps them from leaving for greener pastures. Counselors and physicians with experience are hot commodities in any community, so when a clinic has a successful staff, it is important to keep the staff happy. By keeping the ratios of patients to physicians/counselors low, the employees are better prepared to help their patients. When the employees are suffering from too much stress, they become ineffective which causes problems with the recovering patients.

Build Relationships with Patients

There are many patients who appreciate it when their counselors and physicians have had some personal experience with addiction. Whether the employees had the actual problem or they had family members who had issues with addiction, patients feel like they can build a closer relationship with the employees. While it is not necessary for a good physician or counselor to have struggles with addiction, it is important for the employees in a methadone clinic to have a good relationship with each patient. The patient needs to be able to trust the employees, so the employees need to be professional, courteous, and real.

If you have any questions about the quality of services at Towards Recovery Clinic, please contact us at 905-527-2042.

Who We Serve ?

  • Individuals using/abusing street narcotics (e.g. heroin).
  • Patients abusing prescription narcotics(i.e., Codeine, Talwin, Percocet/Percodan, Dilaudid, Morphine or Demerol, et cetera).
  • Individuals displaying any of the following behaviours: Compulsive drug use or drug seeking/craving.
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