Connecticut Funding Expands MATs for Inmates
(June 4, 2019)
Connecticut jails will use new funding to increase medically-assisted treatment for inmates, says the The Middletown Press. Governor Ned Lamont approved $8 million of funding through 2021. Now, the state’s Department of Correction can grow its opioid treatment from only six jails currently. These inmate MAT programs provide methadone and counseling to their patients. The programs’ supporters believe the treatment will save inmates; the DOC’s spokeswoman, Karen Martucci, says that 50% of those who died of overdoses had spent time in jail. Treating them before they’re released could improve their safety.
The new funding fits into the state’s updated budget plan, and lawmakers tried a similar bill in the legislature: HB 7395 would’ve expanded MAT to all inmates in four years. The proposed law didn’t make it to a vote, but the new funding’s supporters see it as a partial victory for the state’s opioid response.