Mass. county jail distributes opioid blocker to help inmates with addiction

The program was highlighted by the Obama Administration last year

By C1 Staff

BARNSTABLE — The Barnstable County Jail now has an entire section devoted entirely to drug addict treatment, called the Residential Substance Abuse Treatment program (RSAT).

WCVB reports that inmates volunteer to participate in the program, where they undergo group and behavioral therapy. They also learn how to avoid relapsing once they are released from jail.

RSAT gives inmates Vivitrol, an injection that removes cravings for opioids. It lasts for about a month, and if a person on Vivitrol were to relapse, the drug blocks the high.

The drug is especially effective inside the jail due to the fact that users must be opioid free for up to 10 days before receiving the first injection.

“We’ve been getting about 150 folks that we’ve treated,” said Sheriff James Cummings. “Fifty-nine percent of them are still on the straight and narrow.”

The program is expected to expand to other Massachusetts jails, and may even be used in other states. It was highlighted last year by the Obama Administration.

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