Saskatchewan's Solution.




1. General Information.

Saskatchewan is an unusually stable area; a midwest prairie province, huge territory, sparcely populated (never over 1 million), with 5 months of pleasant summer and 7 months of normally harsh winter; bounded by Manitoba to the East, Alberta to the West, both provinces more prosperous than Saskatchewan. Nearly half the population live in two cities, Regina and Saskatoon. Most of the rest are rural; large aboriginal population.

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2. Saskatchewan Methadone Clinics.

In the seventies Saskatchewan had SADAC, a Government agency which ran two Methadone clinics under the Federal withdrawal Protocol; both wound down, Saskatoon in the late seventies, Regina about 1982.

About 1990 Regina opened a dispensing clinic in a hospital, funded and staffed by the Provincial Government, with a limit of 20 patients. In 1999 another doctor in Regina began a small private clinic, now about 50 - 60 patients.

Fort Qu'Appelle, a small farm village community about 40 miles from Regina has an open access clinic, inevitably handling some of Regina's patient population. Moose Jaw, pop. 30,000, has a limited programme with up to 10 patients only; and Yorkton has a doctor with a few patients.

Prince Albert, pop 30,000, has four licenced doctors and 70 patients. There are many more potential patients in that city.

Saskatoon started a clinic in Feb 1997 with 5 patients attached to a regular general practice solo clinic. This has expanded to 250 patients and three Doctors, growing slowly all the time.

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3. Saskatchewan Gaols.

The Saskatchewan Correctional Centres (Provincial Gaols) in Prince Albert and Saskatoon are now allowing inmates already on Methadone to continue on it. The Saskatchewan Penitentiary, our Federal Gaol in Prince Albert, for those with long sentences, also allows it.

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4. Saskatchewan Protocols.

Saskatchewan has one written in 1995, split into several different sections, subject to differing interpretations, and which have ended up all over the place; they do not reflect current thinking or experience; We appear to be operating variably under all of these protocals, participants selecting whichever bit they recollect whenever it suits them; however there are signs that the Provincial Government is thinking of developing a new set of guidelines for 2000.

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