Addicts Are Incarcerated
January 2, 2016, one of the most recent NIDA research study shows, that among heroin detox patients incarcerated for five to ten months or less, those who attended continued methadone maintenance in drug rehab centers or while in prison were more likely to obtain follow up drug treatment or attend AA meetings, than those who received detoxification from heroin while in jail.
The studies show that one month after release, addicts who continued to receive doses of Subutex while incarcerated were more likely to obtain heroin addiction treatment at a community clinic after their release, compared to those clients who went through tapered heroin detox for drug withdrawal. Additionally, in the 7 months following their discharge, opiate use was lowered among the addicts in methadone maintenance, versus the tapered heroin detox center group (12 percent).
Because of the high risk of relapse and fatal overdose that often occurs among those suffering from heroin addiction following release from prison, the study results emphasize the need for more drug rehabs to connect this population to follow-up treatment and retention.
Addiction Treatment Rather than the Penitentiary
According to the National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence, 80% of crimes committed involve the abuse of drugs or alcohol. About half of the currently incarcerated individuals in America’s prisons are clinically described as an addict. In all arrests, about 6/10 test positive for illegal drugs at the time of the arrest. Since the whole Opioid Epidemic, the US Government wants addicts to receive treatment for their disease rather than punishment. It is not fair that the drugs are filling up with addicts when there are treatment programs out there to heal the individual’s core root of addiction through therapy rather than the penitentiary. There are also a number of harm reduction ideas that the government have been considering as a solution to this opioid crisis.
In order to break free from addiction, there are certain methods an addict must use in order to properly and successfully begin their journey in recovery. If the addict has already detoxed in jail, then having them transferred into a residential treatment program from the jail would be a good first step after incarceration.
Most correctional facilities have 12-step based groups as a part of daily or weekly programs that are offered inside the institutions. The goal of these programs is to help the transition back into normal society. The hopes are that the alcohol and drug-free mindset that was started in the jail or prison will be continued upon release.
Positive Outcomes of Jail Treatment Programs
According to statistics from SAMHSA, there are still a lack of penitentiary systems with addiction treatment programs that are being implemented. Even after the overwhelming amount of information supporting jail based treatment programs, there still is a good amount of work to do from our nation’s government to make addiction treatment accessible from all inmates.
The main idea for addicts coming into jail is that while completing their withdrawal from heroin, they also receive treatment for their addiction at the same time. Most individuals know that when you go to jail, if you are a daily heroin user- you will experience a withdrawal. They also let the jail or prison staff know to see if they can receive any medications to ease their withdrawal pains, so when addicts are doing this it is important for jail and prison systems to have treatment programs already in place.