New program offers opioid addiction treatment to inmates

Hampden County jail among counties to see addiction treatment

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Hampden County House of Corrections in Ludlow will be among the jails providing inmates with addiction treatment.

Federal money will fund the opioid addiction treatment to prisoners at five Massachusetts houses of correction.

“It’s about about preparing people for release and getting back to the community and understanding what their going back to,” said Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi.

The Department of Public Health found that individuals recently released from Massachusetts prisons are 56 times more likely to die of an opioid related overdose than the general public.

A total of $500,000 will be awarded to houses of correction in Bristol, Franklin, Hampden, Middlesex and Worcester Counties.

The Baker administration announced Monday that the community based treatment and recovery services program will help inmates approaching 60 days to their release dates.

“I don’t know if it will help but I don’t know what the alternative is,” said Agawam resident Donna Pawlin. “We definitely need something because the drug abuse is rampant.”

Funding is provided by the Substance Abuse mental health Services Administration as part of an $11.7 million federal grant.

Each participant will be able to receive case management, treatment and recovery services for up to a year after their release.