Report On Impact Of Methadone Treatment

Details of a study released today indicate that continued participation in a methadone programme substantially reduces individuals’ drug use and their involvement in acquisitive crime.

The survey, commissioned by the National Advisory Committee on Drugs, involved more than 200 heroin addicts currently on methadone treatment. The study found that 79% of addicts continued in the treatment programme, 12% dropped out and only 3% completed the course.

More than 8,000 people are currently on methadone treatment programmes – almost 50% of the total number of heroin addicts in the country.

Des Corrigan of the National Advisory Committee on Drugs says keeping people in the programmes is essential.

Noel Ahern, the Minister for State with responsibility for the National Drug Strategy, welcomed the findings but said rolling out services in some communities has been a problem.