chapter  9
The methadone game: control strategies and responses
WithHelle Vibeke Dahl
Pages 14

This chapter describes how methadone and methadone clinics can be seen as central means of controlling and disciplining drug addicts. The lives of those who are dependent on illicit drugs can be harsh and strenuous, but what is less well recognised is that life on a methadone maintenance programme also has its darker side, as the treatment does not automatically rehabilitate the client. The predominant methodological approach in the research on drug treatment has been quantitative, with qualitative studies playing only a minor or marginal role. In the mid-1960s, Denmark was the first country outside the USA to introduce a methadone maintenance programme. Methadone maintenance treatment is the most thoroughly evaluated intervention in the field of drug addiction. During the last 40 years, numerous international, medical and quantitative research studies and evaluations have almost ritually reported the effectiveness of the treatment, particularly in reducing heroin use, injecting and criminal activity.