Quality of life and healthcare service utilization among methadone maintenance patients in a mountainous area of Northern Vietnam

Long Hoang Nguyen, Lan Huong Thi Nguyen, Victoria L. Boggiano, Canh Dinh Hoang, Hung Van Nguyen, Huong Thi Le, Hai Quan Le, Tho Dinh Tran, Bach Xuan Tran, Carl A. Latkin, Nabil Zary, Minh Thuc Thi Vu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Background: The expansion of methadone maintenance treatment in mountainous areas in still limited and little is known about its health impacts on drug users. This study aimed to examine health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and health care access among patients engaging in methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) in Tuyen Quang, a mountainous province in Vietnam. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional survey with 241 patients conveniently recruited in two MMT clinics (Son Duong and Tuyen Quang). EuroQol-5 Dimensions - 5 levels (EQ-5D-5 L) and Visual analogue scale (VAS) were employed to measure HRQOL. Multivariate logistic and tobit regressions were used to determine the factors associated with HRQOL and health care utilization. Results: The overall mean score of the EQ-5D index and EQ-VAS were 0.88 (SD = 0.20) and 81.8% (SD = 15.27%), respectively. Only 8.7% utilized inpatient services, and 14.9% used outpatient services. Being more highly educated, suffering acute diseases, and using health service within the last 12 months were associated with a decreased EQ-5D index. Individuals who were multiple substance abusers and those who recently had inpatient care were more likely to have a lower VAS. Older respondents, those taking their medications at the more impoverished clinic, substance abusers, and individuals who were struggling with anxiety/depression or their usual daily activities were more likely to use both inpatient and outpatient care. Conclusions: In summary, we observed good HRQOL, but high prevalence of anxiety/depression and low rates of service utilization among MMT patients in Tuyen Quang province. To improve the outcomes of MMT services in mountainous areas, it is necessary to introduce personalized and integrative services models with counseling and interventions on multiple substance use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number77
JournalHealth and Quality of Life Outcomes
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 20 2017


  • Health service
  • MMT
  • Methadone
  • Mountainous
  • Quality of life
  • Utilization
  • Vietnam

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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