A new research from British Columbia found that aboriginal people who use heroin are less likely than their non-Aboriginal counterparts to use methadone maintenance therapy for treatment of their addiction.
Dr. Evan Wood and colleagues evaluated factors associated with use of methadone maintenance therapy among 1603 injection drug users from May 1996 to November 2005. At enrolment, 12.4% of Aboriginal participants used methadone, compared with 21.2% of non-Aboriginal participants. Among heroin users, Aboriginal people were less likely than non-Aboriginal people to use methadone throughout the follow-up period.
Previous studies have shown elevated rates of health-related harms, such as HIV/AIDS, among Aboriginal people who use injection drugs such as heroin. Methadone therapy is recognized as one of the most effective options for treating heroin addiction.