Latest news

Please refer to the News & Alerts tab for the latest clinic updates.

Jan 17, 2022: Despite the weather, clinic is proceeding as planned today. Please notify us if you have any concerns with your ability to come to clinic today.

Jan 2022: With the surge in COVID cases we have to be extra vigilant with physical distancing and capacity limits. Please come to clinic at your allotted time and be prepared to wait outside until your turn is called - please dress warmly! Thanks for your understanding.

Welcome to our clinic

The Huron-Perth Clinic is an addiction medicine program serving Huron and Perth Counties that was originally established in 2013.  The program is delivered in collaboration with Choices for Change, HPHA Mental Health Services, and Dr. Jason Datema.  It makes use of technology supported by the Ontario Telemedicine Network to make services available locally.  Although the main focus of the program is opioid use, treatment is available for alcohol and tobacco use as well.

This program was designed to address previously unmet needs in Perth and Huron Counties.  It is unique in offering medication to assist with management of the cravings and withdrawal that make quitting so difficult, addiction counseling and support, and access to both primary care and psychiatric services.

Booking a First Appointment for Opioid Use Disorder

To make a first appointment, please call (226) 455-2165 to leave a message including a call-back number.  A nurse or counsellor will usually respond within a day.  See the Huron and Perth Location and Hours of Operation pages for more information on times and locations for appointments.

A first appointment requires a lot of information-gathering and can take an hour.  To speed up the process, please print and complete the initial patient assessment form with as much detail as possible, and bring it with you to your appointment.

The most common medications used for the treatment of opioid use disorder are methadone (a liquid to drink), Suboxone (a tablet under the tongue) and Sublocade (a monthly injection).  If you want to know more about treatment for opioid use disorder, check out this brief guide or this more detailed one from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto.

Dr. Datema will help you decide which medication is right for you, or if another treatment program would be better.  We believe it is important to keep your primary care (family) doctor informed of any treatment that is started, but that is entirely up to you.  If you do want to let them know, we will need signed consent to share information.

If you are already familiar with your treatment options, and feel that you want to start on a program, you can read and print a methadone treatment agreement or Suboxone treatment agreement ahead of time, and bring it with you to your first appointment. 

Follow-up

Follow-up appointments generally take place every week, but are much quicker and are more focussed.  A supervised urine sample is expected at each visit, so please come "prepared."

The length of the program depends on many factors, most importantly the client's wishes, but statistics tell us the greatest chance of long-term success is by sticking with it for 2-3 years.

Clinic Policies

Details of clinic policies are available in the client agreements for methadone and Suboxone.

To emphasize this very important point, please note the following taken directly from the agreement signed by each client:

Behaviour While in The Clinic
I understand that the following behaviour is not acceptable:

  1. Any violence or threatened violence directed toward the clinic staff or other clients.
  2. Disruptive behaviour in or near the clinic.
  3. Any illegal activity, including selling or distributing any kind of illicit drug in or near the clinic.
  4. Any behaviour that disturbs the peace in or near the clinic.

I agree to maintain positive, respectful behaviour toward staff and other program clients at all times when in the clinic. Threats, racist or sexist remarks, physical violence, theft, property vandalism or mischief, possessing weapons and selling or buying illicit substances while in or near the clinic are extremely serious program violations that may result in the termination of my treatment.

Thank you for abiding by these principles at all times.

Treatment of other substance use disorders

Medication assistance is available in the treatment of other substance use problems as well.  For alcohol use, naltrexone, acamprosate, and disulfiram are all established medical therapies that are available in addition to counselling and support services.  Again, booking a first appointment by calling (226) 455-2165 is all you need to do, but it is very helpful if you also fill out the initial patient assessment form and bring it to the first appointment. 

For tobacco use, varenicline, bupropion, and no-cost nicotine replacement therapy are all available, in addition to counselling and support services.

Unfortunately, medications are not yet available to help with the treatment of other substance use problems for drugs such as cocaine, crystal meth, and cannabis, but research is ongoing.  Nevertheless, Choices for Change can help with any drug, alcohol, or gambling issues, and can link you to other support services as well.

Needle exchange

In addition to the services listed above, a needle syringe program (no exchange required) is available during clinic hours with support from Huron Perth Public Health.