Methadone Clinics in Columbia

Name rehabsAddressPhone
Palmetto Health Behavioral Care Richland Springs11 Medical Park Columbia, SC 29203(803) 434-4800
William Jennings Bryan Dorn Veterans Affairs Medical Center6439 Garners Ferry Road Columbia, SC 29209(803) 776-40007026

Rules and Regulations

Columbia, Richland County, and the state of South Carolina follow federal and state laws and regulations regarding methadone clinics and medication-assisted treatment programs. These laws aim to ensure effective and ethical treatment while preventing misuse.

Certification Procedures

To be certified, methadone clinics must:

  • Be accredited and licensed
  • Follow opioid treatment standards
  • Maintain patient records
  • Store medications securely

Benefits of Medication-Assisted Treatment

Research shows that methadone and other medication-assisted treatments, combined with counseling, can:

  • Reduce opioid cravings and withdrawal
  • Lower the risk of overdose
  • Help people maintain recovery and normal daily activities

How Clinics Operate and Their Purpose

Methadone clinics provide daily supervised methadone doses and counseling to those recovering from opioid addiction. This allows people to function without the negative effects of addiction. The ultimate goal is lasting recovery.

Insurance Coverage

Many private and public insurance plans cover methadone treatment, but coverage varies. Medicaid covers treatment costs for those who qualify. Some clinics offer affordable self-pay options.

Drug Use in Columbia

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

  • There were 1,134 opioid-involved overdose deaths in 2020
  • Over 12% of SC residents report misusing prescription opioids
  • The drugs most commonly involved in overdoses are prescription opioids, heroin, fentanyl, and cocaine

Addiction Treatment Overview

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient drug rehab involves living at a treatment facility for 30-90 days. Services include medical detox, individual and group counseling, medication management, nutritional therapy, and relapse prevention planning.

Outpatient Treatment

Outpatient treatment allows clients to reside at home while attending sessions 1-5 times per week for several hours a day. Services are similar to inpatient but less intensive.

Treatment Level Unreported

An estimated 10-20% of SC residents receive some form of untreated addiction care from sources that do not report treatment levels.

Comparison of Treatment in Columbia vs. Charleston

Treatment Centers145192
Inpatient Beds1,8202,134
Cost of Treatment$15,000-$30,000$15,000-$35,000

Methadone Treatment

What is Methadone

Methadone is a long-acting opioid agonist medication used to treat opioid use disorder (OUD). As medication-assisted treatment (MAT), methadone helps prevent withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings. In opioid treatment programs (OTPs), methadone is administered daily under medical supervision based on patient needs, which allows people to function normally without the negative effects of obtaining or using opioids illicitly.

Societal perspectives on methadone treatment are mixed. While some view it positively as a harm reduction approach, others see it as merely substituting one opioid for another. However, research shows methadone MAT helps patients stay in treatment and reduce illicit opioid use when properly managed.

Methadone Distribution

Methadone distribution in OTPs is carefully monitored and regulated:

  • 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 any additional substance issues.
  • Take-home requirements: During the first 14 days of treatment, the take-home methadone supply is limited to just a 24-hour dose. After demonstrating progress, take-homes increase incrementally up to 30 days maximum as a privilege for compliant patients.
  • Monitoring: Methadone treatment programs utilize an interprofessional team including physicians, nurses, counselors, and social workers to monitor patient progress and provide comprehensive care.
  • Prescription drug monitoring: Clinicians should review state Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) data to carefully cross-reference other opioid prescriptions for methadone patients, as methadone has a narrow therapeutic index.

As an opioid, methadone is a Schedule II controlled substance under South Carolina state regulations and the federal Controlled Substances Act.

Methadone Treatment Effectiveness Research

Methadone has been used effectively since 1947 to treat heroin addiction. Studies over decades demonstrate methadone MAT is an evidence-based treatment for OUD.

Evidence for Effectiveness

Research shows participation in a methadone treatment program can significantly reduce illicit opioid use and transmission of infectious diseases, while also decreasing criminal behavior:

  • 33% fewer opioid-positive drug tests for patients on methadone versus no medication
  • 4.44 times more likely to stay in treatment compared to non-medication modalities
  • Retention in treatment reduces risks of overdose and disease transmission while supporting employment

Major Drawbacks

While methadone is effective if properly managed, it does carry risks including:

  • Potential for misuse/diversion due to its opioid properties
  • Severe withdrawal if methadone treatment is stopped suddenly
  • Possible QTc prolongation and cardiac arrhythmia issues
  • Respiratory depression and overdose when combined with alcohol or other Central Nervous System depressants

Comparison to Other Medications

Research shows methadone and buprenorphine are equally effective for treatment retention and reducing illicit opioid use.

Methadone MAT provides substantial benefits but also significant risks requiring careful patient management through specialized opioid treatment programs.

About Columbia

Location, County & List of Neighboring States

Columbia is the capital and largest city of the U.S. state of South Carolina. It is located in Richland County and borders the following states: North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, Kentucky, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

Capital and Largest City

As the capital city of South Carolina, Columbia serves as the seat of government and is the largest city in the state.

Land Area

Columbia has a total land area of 134.9 square miles.


  • State government buildings
  • University of South Carolina
  • Roads, highways, and public transportation
  • Hospitals

Population Statistics

Total Population

The population of Columbia was estimated at 133,451 as of 2020.



  • Female: 54%
  • Male: 46%

Age Brackets

  • Under 18 years: 22%
  • 18 to 65 years: 63%
  • Over 65 years: 15%


  • Education, healthcare & social services: 24%
  • Retail trade: 13%
  • Arts, entertainment, recreation & accommodation: 10%