This publication from the National Commission on Correctional Healthcare and the National Sheriffs’ Association provides a resource to support jail administrators in providing effective treatment for people who have opioid addictions with the goal of curbing the opioid epidemic in the United States.
Jails are on the front lines of this epidemic. They also are in a unique position to initiate treatment in a controlled, safe environment. Pharmacotherapy—i.e., medication-assisted treatment (MAT)—is a cornerstone of best practice for recovery from substance addiction. Treatment using MAT, particularly when coupled with evidence-based behavioral therapy, can improve medical and mental health outcomes and help reduce recidivism. The report introduces lessons learned from sheriffs’ and jail administrators’ innovative use of MAT, describes the essential components of these programs, and discusses the latest research on how the programs are best implemented, as well as the medications approved for opioid addictions.