ASAM Urges Congress To Expand Access to Evidence-Based Addiction Treatment for Incarcerated

In a new public policy statement on treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD) in correctional settings, the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) calls on policymakers to support measures that would expand access to evidence-based addiction treatment for Americans who are incarcerated.

The new policy statement describes the standard of care that ASAM believes all individuals with OUD who are detained and incarcerated should receive and outlines systemic changes to ensure universal access to such care within correctional institutions.

Research suggests nearly two-thirds of individuals who are incarcerated have a history of substance use disorder (SUD), with up to 20 percent meeting criteria for opioid use disorder. “By following the recommendations we detail today, which call for systemic changes to ensure universal access to such care within correctional institutions, we can save lives and encourage long-term recovery — positive outcomes that reverberate well beyond prison walls,” said Paul H. Earley, MD, DFASAM, president of ASAM.

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