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The Truth about Suboxone Addiction Treatment

Suboxone addiction treatment is currently being pushed as hard as Purdue Pharma pushed Oxy a few years ago (remember how they told us it was slow-release and non-addictive?) and about as hard as heroin is being pushed by the dealers.  Many of us who have worked in addiction treatment for a significant period of time see the positive impact of this drug, but also recognize the negative repercussions.  As the Executive Director of a program that is mandated by the state to allow individuals to be on medicated assisted treatment (MAT), a Licensed Clinical Alcohol and Drug Counselor and a person in long term recovery, I have tried to stay informed on the drug Suboxone and other MAT. I have seen guys use it as it was initially prescribed, as a detox med or short term modality, with some success. But when a pharmaceutical company makes a massive mess and the government allows them to clean it up, I think we have a real problem.

April 9th, 2019 marks a huge day. US prosecutors have filed charges against Indivior, the drug maker of the Suboxone film. They found substantial evidence that the company was ignoring the risk of misuse and suboxone addiction treatment marketing it as a safe alternative to addiction treatment. As I have said for years, I have seen many people repeatedly abuse Suboxone addiction treatment and eventually admit it is one of the most harmful medications on the market. Many people who have used it for a extended period of time, just like methadone, say it is excruciating to detox from – even worse than heroin. Just this past Sunday I spoke with a Surfside resident who shared that he got high on his Suboxone daily while living in his previous sober living home in North NJ. How’s that for Suboxone addiction treatment? Not only is it abusable, but the drug market preys on  advocates with loud voices who have lost their children to the opioid epidemic, giving them false hope that this is the new quick fix. It is important to understand that the medical industry is just as dirty as your grandpa’s underwear.

I have worked in Suboxone intensive outpatient settings, methadone clinics and many other treatment settings. I have seen countless people change their lives. As a harm reduction model, this can be hugely effective. But the brutal reality about addiction is there is no quick fix when it comes to completely turning your life around.  Hard work, a proper environment and diligence are some of the key principles necessary to get sober from opioids and other substances.

Please know that Surfside is in full support of our residents who are actively utilizing Medication Assisted Treatment and honor their privacy in taking medication as prescribed by a doctor and in conjunction with therapy.  If you’d like to learn more about how we became one of the first sober livings in New Jersey to embrace Suboxone in our housing, please check out Episode 3 of our podcast.

If you want the full article regarding the fraud with Suboxone Addiction Treatment click the link below.

If you know someone that is struggling and you need help with addiction treatment or recovery make sure you talk with a Licensed or Certified addiction counselor when making your decisions. If you need help you can always email us or call me directly.

I pray that one day transparency hits the addiction treatment world like a freight train.


Ian Koch, MS, LCADC, CAS
Executive Director

Links about the multi billion fraud with suboxone addiction treatment: