Inmates in county jails will have a right to medication-assisted treatment for substance abuse beginning in July 2021, the American Civil Liberties Union said.

The ACLU-New Hampshire said a provision of a health care bill signed by Gov. Chris Sununu last week, House Bill 1639, calls for the treatment.

The law states that the medication-assisted treatment, or MAT, will be provided whether or not the inmate was receiving such treatment prior to incarceration.

Several jails have recently changed policy and have started to provide MAT for inmates. Such treatment must be FDA approved and could include naltrexone, suboxone and methadone.

“Many studies have shown that people who are denied their opioid use disorder medication face an increased risk of relapse, overdose, and even death, in addition to suffering from painful and unnecessary withdrawal,” said Henry Klementowicz, staff attorney at the ACLU of New Hampshire.

In November 2018, the New Hampshire State Prison implemented a policy allowing for MAT for inmates.

However, they must clear an assortment of medical, psychosocial and drug screening procedures.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2020