Methadone Clinics in Pittsburgh

Name rehabsAddressPhone
Addiction Medicine Services Homewood Outreach Program6714 Kelly Street Pittsburgh, PA 15208(412) 363-7383
Alliance Medical Services Inc Ensign II739 Ensign Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15226(412) 488-6360
Alliance Medical Services Inc Pittsburgh729 Ensign Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15226(412) 488-6360
Discovery House PA1391 Washington Boulevard Pittsburgh, PA 15206(412) 661-9222
Progressive Medical Specialists Inc2900 Smallman Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201(412) 391-6384
Summit Medical Services3121 Smallman Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201(412) 255-8717
Tadiso Inc1425 Beaver Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15233(412) 322-8415125
VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System Center for Trt of Addictive Disorders7180 Highland Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15206(412) 954-4092
VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System Center for Trt of Addictive Disorders7180 Highland Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15206(412) 365-5010
Western Psychiatric Institute/Clinic Narcotic Addiction Treatment Program6714 Kelly Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15208(412) 363-7383

Rules and Regulations

Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United States adheres to strict regulations regarding methadone clinics, outlined by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Certification Procedures

Methadone clinics must be certified by SAMHSA and licensed by the state. Staff must complete thorough training and clinics must meet stringent safety, security, and treatment standards. Patients must provide identification and undergo an intake evaluation to receive treatment.

Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment

Methadone and other medications coupled with counseling and behavioral therapies can:

  • Reduce opioid cravings and withdrawal symptoms
  • Decrease risks like overdose and infectious disease
  • Assist with stabilization and recovery

How Clinics Operate and Their Purpose

Methadone clinics provide medication-assisted treatment to those with opioid use disorder. Patients visit daily to receive methadone doses until they can transition to other forms of treatment. Clinics offer counseling, drug testing, and connections to community resources. The ultimate purpose is to mitigate the effects of addiction and support recovery.

Insurance Coverage

  • Many clinics accept Medicaid and private insurance. Some clinics operate on an income-based sliding scale for uninsured patients.
  • Some free or low-cost methadone clinics are available depending on eligibility. These are often funded by government grants, private foundations and/or community support.

Drug Use in Pittsburgh

The opioid crisis has been declared a nationwide public health emergency. In Allegheny County, there were 1237 drug overdose deaths in 2021, with over 80% involving opioids. The most commonly found substances in overdose deaths are:

  • Fentanyl (found in 75% of overdose deaths in 2021)
  • Heroin (29%)
  • Cocaine (28%)
  • Prescription opioids (14%)

Addiction Treatment Overview

Inpatient Treatment

  • The typical stay is 28 days
  • 24/7 medical monitoring and counseling
  • Group and individual therapy

Outpatient Treatment

  • Visit the treatment center up to 5 days a week
  • Individual and group counseling
  • Referrals for medical care

Treatment Level Unreported

An estimated 10-20% of those with substance abuse disorders do not report their treatment level

Comparison of Treatment in Pittsburgh vs. Cleveland

CategoryPittsburghCleveland
Treatment centers14535
Inpatient beds1900800
Cost of treatment$7500/month$5000/month

Methadone Treatment

What is Methadone

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist medication used to treat opioid use disorder. It binds to opioid receptors and reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Methadone maintenance treatment provides opioid-dependent individuals with medication-assisted therapy in an outpatient setting known as an Opioid Treatment Program (OTP). Patients are prescribed methadone doses daily to prevent uncontrolled opioid use. Over time, properly prescribed methadone helps patients stabilize their lives and reduce the harm associated with substance use.

Methadone Distribution

Methadone distribution is carefully monitored due to the potential for misuse and diversion. Regulations include:

  • Urine Testing: Methadone maintenance patients must undergo at least eight random drug tests in the first year of treatment to ensure appropriate use and identify additional substance use issues.
  • Take-Home Requirements: During the first 14 days of treatment, the take-home methadone supply is limited to a one-day/24-hour supply dispensed daily on-site at the clinic. As patients demonstrate treatment progress, take-home supplies can gradually be increased to 2-4 weeks contingent on regular attendance and negative drug tests.
  • Monitoring: Methadone treatment programs should have an interprofessional team including physicians, nurses, counselors, and social workers to provide comprehensive patient care and monitoring.
  • Prescription Drug Monitoring: Clinicians should review prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) data to carefully cross-reference other opioid medications and titrate methadone dosage appropriately within the narrow therapeutic window to prevent over-medication.

As per Allegheny County and Pennsylvania state regulations, methadone is a Schedule II controlled prescription substance with recognized medical use but also potential for harm. The DEA sets quotas on methadone production each year.

Methadone Treatment Effectiveness Research

Methadone has been used to treat opioid addiction since 1947 and is an effective medication for opioid use disorder. Studies show methadone treatment reduces illicit opioid use, disease transmission from injection drug use, and drug-related criminal behavior. Specifically, methadone patients have 33% fewer opioid-positive drug tests and are 4.44 times more likely to stay in treatment compared to individuals who attempt to quit “cold turkey.” Retention in methadone treatment reduces overdose risk, HIV and Hepatitis C transmission from sharing used needles, and increases employment opportunities.

However, methadone does have risks requiring careful management. Potential drawbacks include misuse/diversion of prescribed methadone, severe withdrawal symptoms if the medication is stopped suddenly, QTc prolongation, and cardiac issues for some patients. There is also respiratory depression and overdose risk when misused in combination with alcohol or benzodiazepines. Regarding effectiveness, research shows methadone performs equally as well as buprenorphine for reducing illicit opioid use and retaining patients in medication-assisted treatment. Both medications demonstrate better outcomes than attempting abstinence without pharmacotherapy.

In conclusion, methadone maintenance therapy provides important benefits but also risks requiring careful prescription monitoring and patient education.

About Pittsburgh

Location, Allegheny County & Neighboring States

Pittsburgh is located in Allegheny County in western Pennsylvania. The state of Pennsylvania borders New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, and Ohio.

Capital and Largest City

Harrisburg is the capital of Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh is the second-largest city in Pennsylvania after Philadelphia.

Land Area

The City of Pittsburgh encompasses 55 square miles of land area.

Infrastructure

Pittsburgh is known for its bridges, having 446 bridges located within the city limits. Pittsburgh also has two major airports, the Pittsburgh International Airport and Allegheny County Airport.

Population Statistics

Total Population

The population of Pittsburgh is about 302,407 as of 2020.

Gender

  • Male: 47%
  • Female: 53%

Age Brackets

  • Under 18 years: 16%
  • 18 to 65 years: 69%
  • Over 65 years: 15%

Occupations

Pittsburgh has a diverse economy, with major industries including healthcare, education, technology, robotics, financial services, and tourism. The largest employers are UPMC, University of Pittsburgh, PNC Financial Services Group, Allegheny Technologies Inc., Giant Eagle, U.S. Steel Corp., Highmark Health, Carnegie Mellon University, and the federal government. The top occupations are in business, science, arts, sales, healthcare, production, education, and office administration.