Connecticut to Offer Methadone Treatment in All Jails Statewide
Date:  04-27-2016

People in CT prisons who qualify will also be offered methadone up to two months prior to being released
Via David Collins, Associated Press

Connecticut officials are planning to expand methadone treatment to prisoners across the state over the next year or so, in what authorities believe would be the first statewide program in the country to use the drug to help prisoners avoid harsh withdrawal symptoms and overdoses. The effort comes as heroin overdoses have soared nationwide. In Connecticut alone, heroin was detected in 415 people who died from accidental overdoses last year, up from 174 in 2012. A total of 723 people died from drug overdoses in the state in 2015, 44 percent of whom had a state Department of Correction record, according to the state prison and budget agencies.

State officials say methadone treatment can help curb overdoses. Studies, including one of Washington state inmates in 2007, show that addicted prisoners forced to quit cold turkey in jail are at risk of overdosing in the first few weeks of being released. Officials say it’s because their tolerance has decreased and they take the same heroin doses they did when their tolerance was higher before they were locked up.

Read the full article as it appeared in the New Haven Register here.