The new methadone clinic planned for Charlottetown hopes to take on 100 new patients, says a doctor who is involved in the clinic.
But there are probably hundreds more who would like treatment for opiate addiction, said Dr. Peter Hooley.
Hooley has been helping dozens of opiate addicts through his family practice in Charlottetown for close to seven years.
Now, he and a group of other specially trained family doctors are going to run a methadone clinic in the city, separate from the provincially run program at the Provincial Addictions Treatment Facility in Mount Herbert.
The Mount Herbert program has a waiting list of close to 75 people right now.
The six to eight doctors involved in the new clinic decided more needed to be done, Hooley said.
"There's a huge need for it. There's hundreds of people in the community with opiate dependence that want help and can't get it," said Hooley.
The group plans to take on 100 new patients to start, which should clean up the waiting list, Hooley said.
But he hopes that will encourage even more people who need it to seek methadone treatment.
The new clinic will offer a similar program to what's offered at the provincial addictions centre, but the group of doctors wanted to be more independent, said Hooley.
"And we thought if we have a group of really strong people, health professionals, that were motivated to work together with the same goals and the same philosophies, that we could do it most efficiently on our own without any great interference from management, middle management and bureaucracy ," said Hooley.
Hooley won't say exactly where the new clinic will be located, although he said it will be centrally located in Charlottetown.
The group hopes to have it up and running early in the new year, he said.
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