Groups who work with the formerly incarcerated individuals say those individuals are 129 times more likely to overdose from opiates and narcotics than at any other time in their lives. Two groups, the New Jersey Reentry Corporation and Care Plus New Jersey are partnering to reach ex-prisioners before they end up in the emergency room.
The groups signed a deal to provide medical treatment to the clients of the New Jersey Reentry Corporation.
“When people are in jail, or people are in prison, and they have these acute cravings and then they come out and they haven’t used drugs in a long period of time so their resistance has gone way down but their cravings have gone up. And if they don’t have medication-assisted treatment, if they don’t have suboxone, they don’t have vivitrol, what happens is eventually the cravings overtake them, they go back to running, and gunning and doping. And now they’ll take the drug, what they think is heroin, but now in include fentanyl, and it’s so much more powerful. It’s so much more toxic and they’ll overdose, and in a significant number of cases they’ll die,” said New Jersey Reentry Corporation Executive Director and former Gov. Jim McGreevey.
The deal will allow ex prisoners to access what’s known as medication-assistant treatment which are key drugs that cut down on cravings, therefore reducing the chance of relapse.