Philadelphia, PA - The Philadelphia Department of Prisons (PDP) recently received the Public Health Recognition Award from the College of Physicians of Philadelphia for implementing programs at the PDP for individuals in custody who suffer from a substance abuse disorder. The award was presented at the Public Health Day Symposium at the College of Physicians on April 2.
Prison Commissioner Blanche Carney stated, “Our intention is to lessen the burden of access to treatment by helping inmates with addiction make connections to post-release services prior to leaving custody, to experience a better outcome and to continue to rebuild and regain control of a life beyond substance abuse once they return to our communities. We rely on it to help those in our custody and care as they transition back into the community.
- Enrolling inmates in Medical Assistance
- Offering medication-assisted treatment to individuals with opioid use disorder
- Ensuring that all inmates are educated about overdose and death risks after release, what Narcan does, how to administer Narcan and how to obtain Narcan
- Ensuring all inmates receive Dr. Levine’s standing Narcan prescription upon release
- Issuing two-dose, nasal Narcan kits to Clinical Opioid Withdrawal Scale (COWS) patients at release
PDP admits 28,000 inmates annually and 76% have a substance use disorder. Approximately one-third of all persons who experience fatal overdose have been involved in the criminal justice system.