VANCOUVER – The College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia is relaxing its regulations covering access to a drug that can help treat heroin addiction.
On its website, the college says physicians no longer need a special exemption to prescribe Suboxone or its generic versions.
Paperwork linked to prescribing the drug is also being scaled back, with the college announcing it will no longer keep a central registry of patients in the methadone program.
It means doctors won’t have to submit patient registration, transfer, and cessation forms when prescribing Suboxone, but must still check a patient’s previous drug history before starting opioid treatment.
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The changes, made in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, took effect July 1.
Suboxone has been covered under B.C.’s PharmaCare program since October 2015 and the Canadian Research Initiative on Substance Misuse says it is a promising opiate replacement therapy that has been proven to decrease overdose deaths.