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Cayuga County implementing Medication Assisted Treatment for addicted inmates

The Cayuga County Sheriff’s Department is putting together a Medication Assisted Treatment program (MAT) for County Jail inmates battling addiction.


MAT combines medications with counseling and other help

The idea of MAT is to use medications to help addicted inmates reduce, and eventually stop their drug use while they get the counseling and other help they need. Cayuga County Sheriff Brian Schenck says his department will add MAT to the services it already provides in partnership with local social service agencies.


Related: Attorney General James secures $58.5 million from top opioid manufacturer Mallinckrodt for fueling opioid crisis



New state law mandates MAT in jails

The MAT in Jails and Prisons Act, passed by the legislature and signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul this year, requires treatment programs to be put in place by October. The state Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) is providing $8.81 million to help counties implement MAT.

“This bill is an important tool as we fight substance abuse and the opioid crisis,” Governor Hochul said. “By providing Substance Use Disorder services to incarcerated individuals in both state and local correctional settings, individuals will have the opportunity to treat their addiction and return to healthy and productive lives.”

The new legislation mandates the establishment of programs to provide medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for incarcerated individuals in state and local correctional facilities. Expanding, MAT across state and local facilities will allow incarcerated individuals access to medications and therapies to provide them the opportunity to treat their addiction, lessening the likelihood that they may suffer a drug-related overdose upon their reentry into society.

This additional funding will assist local jails in establishing various treatment services including MAT, screening, assessment, clinical services, peer services, case management, and other services as appropriate.

Listen to my full Inside the FLX conversation with Cayuga County Sheriff Brian Schenck below.


Related: NYS OASAS announces award of more than $475,000 to support addiction prevention workforce



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