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Extra methadone reward 'unethical'

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DRUG misusers who provide a clean urine sample are being wrongly rewarded with increased doses of methadone, according to reports.

DRUG misusers who provide a clean urine sample are being wrongly rewarded with increased doses of methadone, according to reports.

Nearly a third of the 191 clinics surveyed for the National Treatment Agency ( NTA) said that they considered giving extra methadone to those being treated for heroin addiction if their urine samples had no traces of cocaine or crack cocaine.

But the NTA told the BBC that offering drugs for anything other than clinical reasons was unethical, and that it wanted to see certain practices 'squeezed out of the system'.

As reported in NT, nurses have also criticised the incentive, part of NICE guidelines published in July (NT News, 31 July, p6), because they say that urine tests are notoriously prone to tampering.

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