January 24th, 2021

Province to continue funding Virtual Opioid Dependency Program

By Jensen, Randy on June 25, 2020.

Lethbridge Herald

The provincial government announced Tuesday it would be continuing to fund the Virtual Opioid Dependency Program and offering free naloxone and methadone treatment for those struggling with opioid addiction in Alberta.

An additional $4 million over four years will help expand access to the VOPD, an Alberta Health Services program which uses telehealth technology to allow Albertans with opioid addictions to almost immediate access to treatment referral and access to addictions counselling and transitional services.

The federal government’s Opioid Agonist Therapy (OAT) Gap Coverage program will largely be paying for the naloxone and methadone doses. According to the Alberta government since April 1 about 1,100 Albertans have enrolled in the program, which has a proven success rate for reducing overdoses and advancing patients toward greater addiction care and other social supports to help get their lives back on track.

VOPD has served over 2,000 clients to date.

“We’re creating pathways for recovery across the continuum of care for Alberta,” says Jason Luan, Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions in a statement released to the media. “The Virtual Opioid Dependency and OAT Gap Coverage programs are important tools to help people across the province get the treatment they need to recover and live healthy, successful lives.”

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