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[Irish Medical Times] , Mudiwa, Lloyd Over 9,300 on methadone. (05 Dec 2014)

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According to the HSE’s Central Treatment List, there was a total of 9,301 patients receiving Methadone treatment as of the end of September 2014.

Of the total expenditure attributed to Addiction Services within HSE Social Inclusion it is not possible to identify all of the elements of the funding specifically for Methadone substitution treatment.

However, the cost attributed to the Methadone Treatment Scheme (MTS) (excluding the funding or operation of treatment clinics) for the year to date as of August 2014, for the HSE Primary Care Reimbursement Service (PCRS) was €13,159,000.

The expenditure for Methadone to the HSE PCRS for last year was €19,267,629 and it was €18,404,938 for 2012.

The HSE pointed out the cost of the MTS during the period 2012 to August 2014 comprised ingredient costs and the associated dispensing fees to pharmacist, and fees paid to GPs contracted to the General Medical Services Scheme who were registered to provide services to clients on Methadone.

The HSE, which published the Introduction of the Opioid Treatment Protocol in December 2010 — a wide-ranging review of the Methadone Treatment Protocol (1998) — and examined the current regulatory processes and oversight arrangements for opiate dependence treatment in Ireland, also indicated there were no future plans to review this Protocol.

“It was a comprehensive review that followed a consultation process with key stakeholders including those involved in both the delivery of the service and, most importantly, in receipt of this service. The priority is to implement the recommendations as per the Primary Care Operational Plan,” the HSE stated.

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