Mental Health  |  OST Pathway - Aims of OST

Mental Health

OST Pathway - Aims of OST


  • Contribute to improving the health of patients as well as aspects of their personal and social functioning.
  • Focus on improvements to quality of life such as education, employment, relationships with significant others.
  • Reduce the spread of infectious diseases associated with injecting drug use, specially hepatitis B and C and HIV/AIDS.
  • Reduce the mortality and morbidity resulting from the misuse of opioid drugs.
  • Assist individuals to achieve successful withdrawal from opioids.
  • Reduce episodes of illegal and other harmful drug use.
  • Reduce crime associated with opioid use.

All aspects of service provision are aimed at reducing harm to the individual, the family/whanau and the community.

The Opioid Substitution Treatment offered should:

  • Suppress opioid withdrawal and craving.
  • Not induce sedation or euphoria.

Maintenance doses are individualised to assist the patient to achieve their negotiated treatment goals.

Any increase/decrease in dose should be based on a clinical assessment.  This clinical assessment might include a serum methadone level.

To achieve these aims the service focuses on:

  • Delivering person-centred, services that are both accessible and acceptable to patients.
  • Maintaining a partnership approach with patients.
  • Adopting a motivational rather than confrontational approach.
  • Adopting prescribing practices that are evidence and strengths based.
  • Supporting planned withdrawal from methadone or buprenorphine/naloxone when appropriate.

Patient confidentiality and privacy are maintained in accordance with relevant legislation and patient consent is obtained in line with the requirements of the Code of Health and Disability Services Consumer Rights Act 1996.

*See Section 1.1 Objectives of OST page 4-5 of " New Zealand Practice Guidelines for Opioid Substitution Treatment 2014"

Last updated : Friday, January 10, 2020
Next review date : Saturday, January 09,2021

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