Retention of patients who entered methadone maintenance via an interim methadone clinic

Patricia Friedmann, Don C. Des Jarlais, Nina P. Peyser, Stuart E. Nichols, Edmund Drew, Robert G. Newman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Time in treatment is considered an important predictor of good outcomes for drug abuse treatment. Patientretention would be of particular concern for low-service types of treatment. Interim methadone maintenance was developed as an alternative to waiting lists and as a method of providing HIV risk-reduction services to heroin addicts waiting for treatment, and does not include the regular counseling required in comprehensive methad one treatment. This analys is compares the retention of patients first admitted to an interim methadone clinic versus that of patients admitted directly to a comprehensive methadone clinic. The two groups did not differ with regard to demographic characteristics and drug of abuse at the time of admission. The two groups did not differ with respect to demographics. The three-, six-, and 12-month retention rates of patients first admitted to the interim clinic were 78%, 69%, and 62%, respectively. The three-, six-, and 12-month retention rates for patients admitted directly to a traditional methad one clinic were 84%, 76%, and 68%, respectively. Life-table analysis revealed that the two groups did not differ significantly with regard to retention ( p=0.17). Interim treatment does not appear to adversely affect overall retention in treatment. Three and six-month retention rates of interim clinic patients fall within the range of six-month nationwide retention rates reported by the GAO. Factors associated with discharge from treatment are examined for both groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-221
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Psychoactive Drugs
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994



  • HIV-risk reduction
  • Heroin
  • Interim methadone treatment
  • Retention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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