Methadone Clinics in Rochester

Name rehabsAddressPhone
Sisters of Charity Hospital Rochester Pathways435 East Henrietta Road, Rochester, NY 14620(585) 424-6580
Strong Behavioral Health Strong Recovery Chemical Dependency300 Crittenden Boulevard, Department of Psychiatry, Rochester, NY 14642(585) 275-3161

Rules and Regulations

Rochester, Monroe County, New York, United States adheres to strict regulations regarding methadone clinics, outlined by the New York State Opioid Treatment Program (OTP). All clinics must be certified by the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS), adhere to federal and state regulations, and provide counseling and other services in addition to dispensing methadone.

Certification Procedures

To open and operate a methadone clinic in New York, organizations must submit an application and fee to OASAS and undergo a regulatory review process. Clinics must meet standards for administration, staffing, facility safety and security, patient admission criteria and more. Ongoing reviews are conducted to ensure compliance.

Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment

  • Reduces opioid cravings and withdrawal symptoms
  • Allows stabilization and focus on recovery
  • Lowers risk of overdose and transmitting infections
  • Improves health and social functioning

How Clinics Operate and Their Purpose

Methadone clinics provide daily supervised methadone dosing and comprehensive treatment services to those with an opioid use disorder. The goal is harm reduction and improving patients’ ability to function normally. Counseling, drug testing, case management, and referrals are typically provided.

Insurance Coverage

  • Medicaid covers methadone treatment
  • Some private insurers cover treatment
  • Sliding-scale fees available at many clinics
  • State-funded grants help fund low-cost and free treatment

Drug Use in Rochester

The opioid crisis was declared a public health emergency in the U.S.

  • In 2020, there were 596 drug overdose deaths in Monroe County. This is a 23% increase from 2019.
  • The most commonly detected substances in overdose deaths were fentanyl and heroin.

Addiction Treatment Overview

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient treatment involves staying at a facility 24/7 for 1-3 months typically. It includes medical detox, counseling, group therapy, medication management, and aftercare planning.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment involves periodic services for 1-2 hours at a time, 1-3 days per week. It may include therapy, support groups, and medication management.

Treatment Level Unreported

Around 10% of admissions in New York have an unreported treatment level according to SAMHSA. This may be due to patients leaving against medical advice.

Comparison of Treatment in Rochester vs. Buffalo

Treatment facilities100150
Inpatient beds available500800
Cost of treatment$10,000$15,000

Methadone Treatment

What is Methadone

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist medication used to treat opioid use disorder and prevent withdrawal symptoms. It works by activating the opioid receptors in the brain, reducing drug cravings and blocking the euphoric effects of other opioids. Methadone is taken orally once daily in liquid or tablet form and administered through federally regulated opioid treatment programs (OTPs).

Methadone maintenance treatment provides a legally obtained, orally effective opioid substitute that stabilizes patients and enables them to function normally. It is intended to mitigate the medical and social issues associated with opioid misuse and allow patients to focus on making positive lifestyle changes through counseling and behavioral therapies. Methadone programs provide comprehensive treatment services in addition to dispensing the medication.

While methadone has demonstrated effectiveness in treating opioid addiction, it remains controversial with some opposition based on moral or philosophical grounds. Supporters argue that methadone enables individuals to lead productive lives, reduces crime associated with illegal opioid use, and is a compassionate public health approach. Critics raise concerns about substituting one opioid for another and believe abstinence-based models should be prioritized instead. Overall perspectives on methadone are mixed and influenced by social stigma around addiction.

Methadone activates the same opioid receptors in the brain as other opioids, but as a slow-acting medication taken once daily, it prevents withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings without causing a strong high. This allows people dependent on opioids to function normally and focus on making positive life changes.

Methadone Distribution

Description of monitoring and regulations:

  • Urine testing: Methadone maintenance patients must undergo at least eight tests in the first year of treatment.
  • Take-home requirements: During the first 14 days of treatment, the take-home supply of methadone is limited to a 24-hour supply.
  • Monitoring: Methadone treatment programs should have an interprofessional team providing counseling, mental health services, primary care, and coordination with social services.
  • Prescription drug monitoring: Clinicians should review prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) data to carefully cross-reference other medications and opioid dosage, as methadone has a narrow therapeutic window.

Rochester, state drug classifications:

  • New York has a prescription drug monitoring program
  • The New York prescription monitoring program tracks schedule II-V drugs
  • The Office of National Drug Control Policy reports on state strategies

Methadone Treatment Effectiveness Research

Methadone is an effective medication for treating opioid use disorder used since 1947.

Evidence for Effectiveness

Studies show methadone reduces opioid use, disease transmission, and crime. Methadone patients have 33% fewer opioid-positive drug tests. They are also 4.44 times more likely to stay in treatment. Retention in treatment reduces overdose and disease transmission risk while increasing employment opportunities.

Major Drawbacks

Potential for misuse and diversion exists. Sudden discontinuation can cause severe withdrawal symptoms. Methadone can prolong the QT interval on an ECG and predispose susceptible patients to cardiac arrhythmias. It also carries risks of respiratory depression and overdose when combined with alcohol or certain medications.

Comparison to Other Medications

Methadone and buprenorphine are equally effective in reducing illicit opioid use.

Methadone has demonstrated effectiveness but also risks requiring careful management.

About Rochester

Rochester is a city located in Monroe County, New York, United States.

Location, County & List of Neighboring States

Rochester is located in Western New York along the southern shore of Lake Ontario. It is the seat of Monroe County. Rochester borders the following neighboring states:

  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey
  • Vermont
  • Massachusetts
  • Connecticut

Capital and Largest City

Albany is the capital of New York, while New York City is the largest city. Rochester is the third most populous city in New York after New York City and Buffalo.

Land Area

The total land area of Rochester is 35.8 square miles.


Rochester is home to an international airport, subway system, Amtrak station, interstate highways, and port.

Population Statistics

Total Population

The total population of Rochester is 206,284 as of 2010.



There are 95,108 male residents and 111,176 female residents.

Age Brackets

Over 15% of residents are aged 18 years or below. 67% fall between 18 to 65 years. And 17% are 65 years and over.


The major industries providing employment are healthcare, manufacturing, education, retail, and technology.