New to methadone nursing


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196 Posts

Has 2 years experience.
@annananana2. Why are your clients seeing a pharmacist every day and not a nurse??

I'm Canadian so maybe we do it differently than you guys. Our folks who are on methadone get a script from a physician and go pick up their methadone every day from whatever pharmacy it is that they get it dispensed from. So they see a pharmacist. Maybe it's because we don't really have dedicated methadone clinics? Is that how you guys work? Our folks get their methadone script from their GP just like all of their other medications. It's nice, in some ways, that they have to go to the pharmacy every day to get their methadone because that's a good way to get their other meds in them as well.


3 Articles; 859 Posts

Specializes in Psychiatric Nursing. Has 30 years experience.

I am familiar with a model where person is evaluated by psychiatry and assessed daily by the nurse when given dose.

I agree with everything you said about methadone. For me, when I worked in the program, it was a way to begin to convince people to consider a life without using drugs. I never fully understood why people could not or would not stop using drugs. Some did detox off the program... Not many..


6 Posts

Specializes in Addictions, Cardiology, Family Medicine. Has 3 years experience.

I am way late on commenting on this thread but perhaps my comment will reach someone whom is seeking the same answers!

I am currently a dispensing nurse in the Methadone clinic. Our hours are fantastic. I start around 4:45a but I am always off by 12 which is great.

My daily duties are dispensing the Methadone through a pump that calibrates the patient's dose, doing assessments to determine which dose the patient should be on, entering orders for the doctor, conducting admission interviews with patient, giving injections (PPD, Hep B, Flu shots, Vivitrol), filing charts, writing nurse's notes, verifying patient's last doses from their previous clinic or for guest dosers, participating in treatment team meeting where we discuss patient's urine screenings and any problems that have arisen that week.

I work with a tight group of coworkers. 4 Counselors, 2 front office people, and just two nurses. The regulation at my clinic is 1 nurse for every 200 patients and because of this, I am the only nurse working Monday-Friday.

You have to have tough skin in this line of work. For the most part, my patients are the most respectful and friendly patients I have ever worked with.... until you have to deny their dose increase request, give them their random urine sample for the month, or deny to dose them due to sedative behaviors.

I love the client base and I love the pay. I have found that I make much MORE than my friends who work in LTC and have to work evenings. I am required to work all holidays if they fall Monday-Friday but the overtime pay is marvelous.

I hope you're finding yourself happy in your position and that this post can help someone whom is curious about the field.

I say take the leap and find out :) It's a promising field and heroin right now is a HUGE epidemic. Just using heroin as an example. There are PLENTY of other addictions that we treat!