The OPTIMA team

OPTIMA is a unique multicenter Canada-wide trial evaluating a new addiction care model that will potentially increase the appeal, adherence, and effectiveness of these treatments. The 4 CRISM-NPIs and their teams are working together with the overarching objective of comparing different models of care involving both Canadian standard of care treatments in opioid addiction, namely methadone and buprenorphine/naloxone (also known as Suboxone).

OPTIMA: Optimizing Patient Centered-Care: a PragmaticRandomizedControl Trial Comparing Models of Care in the Management of Prescription Opioid Misuse

Current status: RECRUITING

For more information:
514-890-8000 ext. 30932

Amel Zertal, MSc
Clinical Research Coordinator


Preventing and treating opioid addiction is an urgent public health priority in Canada. To develop novel and more efficient treatment programs based on the real needs of individuals afflicted by prescription opioid use disorder, a strong foundation of evidence-based data is necessary and can only be built via large-scale multisite interventional studies such as OPTIMA.

Currently, opioid substitution is a widely used approach to treat patients who became addicted to prescription opioids. Here, in Canada, methadone has long been the main standard of care treatment for opioid use disorder. The use of this synthetic opioid developed in the 60’s is heavily regulated given the relatively important risk of overdose and diversion toward the illicit market.

Recently, buprenorphine/naloxone has become a common alternative appreciated by both clinicians and patients. Yet, while buprenorphine/naloxone has a better tolerability and safety profile than methadone, the model of care that was put in place for its use has been designed based on the methadone model, which is very strict. Therefore, there is a clear need for evaluating more adapted models of care that could facilitate buprenorphine/naloxone use in treatment settings.

Hence, the OPTIMA study will evaluate and compare these two different models of care for methadone and buprenorphine/naloxone, to inform the Canadian clinical practice about the optimal use of these approaches.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Persons who have a substance use disorder and who use prescription opioid medication;
  • Be aged between 18 and 64 years of age inclusively;
  • Not on agonist therapy at the moment (methadone or buprenorphine/naloxone);
  • Interested in beginning a treatment.