Health PEI says a new treatment for opiate addictions is working well for young people.

Sean Morrison

P.E.I.'s Strength youth addiction program has seen improvements since the introduction of Suboxone, says team leader Sean Morrison. (CBC)

Suboxone, an alternative to methadone, was made more widely available in the province in December.

Sean Morrison, team leader with the Strength youth addictions program, said addicts on methadone can take up to two months to stabilize, but Suboxone works more quickly.

"These clients are not dealing with those cravings, and that's a big piece for them in being able to engage and sometimes even tolerate going through treatment," said Morrison.

"It's a very emotional roller-coaster, being able to deal with all of their problems. And so if they're first response is not to run off and use because that emotional side is being dealt with this medication, it assists us in being able to promote better outcomes."

Morrison said there's been about a 10 per cent increase in the number of young people completing the Strength program over last year, in part due to Suboxone.

Fourteen young people in the Strength program have used Suboxone, and two no longer in the program are also on the treatment.