Drug user launches proposed class action lawsuit over methadone switch

published on June 5, 2020 by Camille Bains in CBC News - BC

A drug user “forced” to switch to a reformulated methadone treatment introduced in British Columbia six years ago has filed a proposed class-action lawsuit against the provincial government, the college of pharmacists and a pharmaceutical company.

Laura Shaver was among an estimated 18,000 people given Methadose instead of methadone, a change she said Friday was done without consultation and puts patients who relapse at risk of death from illicit street drugs that could contain fentanyl.

Shaver and others taking compounded methadone as part of a daily treatment program to try and quit opioids such as heroin have maintained that Methadose is a weaker medication and causes painful withdrawal symptoms for a high proportion of people who end up seeking street drugs to cope.

“I hadn’t used heroin in four years or something,” she said. “Within six days, I was a raging injection junkie again. The things I went through, the sweats, the shakes. I don’t even know where to start.”…

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