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Are Methadone Programs and Opioid Addiction Treatment Centers Discrete About Your Usage?

by Nick

If you’ve decided to get help for opioid addiction, you’ve made a courageous choice, and there is no reason to be ashamed. However, many people are afraid to get treatment due to the stigma addiction still carries. You may worry that your family, your boss or your friends will find out that you’re receiving methadone. Rest assured, methadone programs and opioid addiction treatment centers operate under strict regulations that protect your right to privacy.

If you’re wondering whether methadone programs are discrete about your past use and current treatment, the answer is a resounding yes.

Your Medical Records Are Private

If you’ve chosen to get help for opioid use disorder, you should know that there are laws in place to protect your privacy. The guidelines covering confidentiality at your family doctor’s office are called HIPAA or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. However, substance use disorder treatment providers, like methadone programs, work within even more stringent regulations than those which protect your regular medical records. These privacy laws fall under 42 CFR Part 2.

Part 2 contains strict rules that protect your medical information so that unintended people cannot see it without your permission. Providers may not even disclose your identity if you are receiving care. The only exceptions that allow providers to reveal your information without your consent are court orders, medical emergencies and crimes.

Your Employer Does Not Have to Know About Your Addiction Treatment

You may be concerned that current or potential employers will find out that you misused opioids if you seek treatment. However, Part 2 regulations prevent your treatment center from revealing that you are receiving care. If a staff member at your methadone program is asked if you have a problem with addiction, they will tell your employer that they don’t know anyone by your name.

The facility may ask if you would like to sign authorization to reveal that you are receiving care. With this permission, your provider can tell your boss that you are obtaining social services at their location. If you are concerned about losing your job, a professional licensed counselor can also help you develop responses to employer questions so that you can protect your privacy without lying.

Discretion at Methadone Programs

From your first intake appointment and beyond, discretion is a top priority at a licensed methadone program. Even if a family member drops you off and comes in later to ask about you, the receptionist cannot tell them that you are there.

Patients who utilize medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to address withdrawal symptoms and cravings also receive discrete therapeutic addiction counseling and personalized care. These programs ensure the proper use of methadone and other medications and are designed to help move you toward healthy life changes.

To get the most out of treatment, patients are encouraged to participate in as many activities offered through the opioid treatment program (OTP) as possible. No matter which services you take advantage of, your privacy is protected no matter what — strict guidelines of confidentiality guide those working in the treatment facility. In fact, each time your electronic chart is pulled up, that access is documented, so there is always an electronic record of who is looking at your chart.

Experience Discrete Opioid Addiction Treatment at HCRC

Don’t let fear of indiscretion stop you from getting the help you need. At Health Care Resource Centers, we ensure our patients receive individualized MAT treatment with an emphasis on privacy and respect. Learn how to get started and take your first step toward a healthy, drug-free life.

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