Methadone Clinics in Saint Paul

Rules and Regulations

Saint Paul adheres to strict federal and state regulations regarding methadone clinics, as outlined by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Minnesota Board of Pharmacy. All clinics must be certified by SAMHSA and licensed by the state pharmacy board.

Certification Procedures

To be certified, methadone clinics must:

  • Comply with federal and state regulations
  • Be accredited and pass inspections
  • Have certified medical staff
  • Provide counseling and support services
  • Protect patient confidentiality

Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment

Methadone and other medication-assisted treatments for opioid addiction can:

  • Reduce opioid cravings and withdrawal symptoms
  • Allow people to focus on their health and recovery
  • Lower the risk of overdose and transmitting diseases
  • Help people reclaim family, work, and life stability

How Clinics Operate and Their Purpose

Certified methadone clinics provide daily monitored doses of methadone to treat opioid addiction. Clinics offer counseling, drug testing, and connections to community resources to support recovery. Their purpose is to facilitate recovery using evidence-based treatment.

Insurance Coverage

Many private insurance plans and Medicaid cover methadone treatment. Some clinics offer services on a sliding fee scale based on income for those without coverage. Grant-funded public health programs may also offer access to free methadone clinics. Patients are encouraged to check their insurance plan details for medication-assisted treatment coverage.

Drug Use in Saint Paul

The opioid crisis has been declared a nationwide public health emergency. In Minnesota:

  • There were 633 opioid-involved deaths in 2020, a 58% increase from 2015
  • Alcohol and methamphetamine are also widely used substances

Addiction Treatment Overview

Inpatient Treatment

  • Typical length of stay is 28 days
  • Services include medical detoxification, counseling, group therapy, medication management

Outpatient Treatment

  • Services provided 1-5 days per week for several hours per day
  • Located in clinics, hospitals, community health centers

Treatment Level Unreported

An estimated 10% of Minnesotans struggling with addiction do not report their treatment level

Comparison of Treatment in Saint Paul vs. Minneapolis

CategorySaint PaulMinneapolis
Number of treatment facilities2532
Inpatient beds available850975
Cost of treatment$15,000$18,000

Methadone Treatment

What is Methadone

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist medication used to treat opioid use disorder and dependence. As medication-assisted treatment (MAT), methadone helps prevent opioid withdrawal and reduces drug cravings by activating opioid receptors in the brain similarly to other opioid drugs. However, it does not provide the associated euphoria or high of misused opioids. Methadone is taken orally once daily in tapering doses under medical supervision in what are known as opioid treatment programs (OTPs).

Societal perspectives on methadone treatment are mixed. While it is an evidence-based treatment, some view it as merely replacing one addiction with another. However, methadone enables patients to function normally, improve health, reduce criminal behavior, and hold jobs. When taken as prescribed, it is safe and non-sedating.

Methadone Distribution

Methadone distribution is highly monitored and regulated:

  • Urine testing: Patients must undergo at least eight random urine drug tests in the first year to detect any unsanctioned drug use.
  • Take-home requirements: For the first 14 days, the take-home methadone supply is limited to a one-day dose taken on-site with medical supervision. After 90 days of compliance, patients can earn a maximum 30-day take-home supply.
  • Monitoring: Methadone treatment programs require an interprofessional team including physicians, nurses, and behavioral health staff to coordinate care.
  • Prescription drug monitoring: Clinicians should review the state’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) database to carefully cross-reference other prescribed opioids and avoid dangerous drug interactions.

According to the state PDMP, Washington County recorded 107,390 methadone prescriptions in 2021, down 2% from the previous year. Minnesota legally allows methadone use for addiction treatment only through certified OTPs regulated by federal and state substance abuse agencies.

Methadone Treatment Effectiveness Research

Methadone has been used to treat opioid addiction since 1947. Studies show it is an extremely effective MAT medication for treating opioid use disorder. Compared to no medication or placebo, methadone:

  • Produces 33% fewer opioid-positive drug tests
  • Makes patients 4.44 times more likely to stay in treatment
  • Retention in treatment reduces disease transmission risks and mortality while improving employment

However, methadone does carry risks:

  • Potential for misuse and diversion
  • Severe withdrawal if stopped suddenly
  • Possible QTc prolongation or cardiac arrhythmias
  • Respiratory depression or overdose when combined with other sedatives

Research shows methadone and buprenorphine are equally effective in reducing illicit opioid use. However, careful patient monitoring and management of risks is vital.

Methadone is beneficial but also requires careful oversight.

About Saint Paul

Saint Paul is located in Washington County in the U.S. state of Minnesota. Minnesota shares borders with Wisconsin, Iowa, South Dakota, and North Dakota.

Location, County & List of Neighboring States

  • Wisconsin (east)
  • Iowa (south)
  • South Dakota (southwest)
  • North Dakota (west)

Capital and Largest City

Saint Paul is the capital and second most populous city in Minnesota. Minneapolis is the largest city in the state.

Land Area

Saint Paul covers 56.18 square miles of land area.


Saint Paul has an international airport, train and bus stations, public transportation, and an interstate freeway system.

Population Statistics

The population of Saint Paul is 306,621 as of 2020.



  • Male: 49.1%
  • Female: 50.9%

Age Brackets

  • Under 18 years: 19.2%
  • 18 to 64 years: 65.0%
  • 65 years and over: 15.8%


Popular occupations in Saint Paul include healthcare, education, office administration, food service, and sales.