Carroll County Commissioners Reject Medication Assisted Treatment Policy For Inmates

Oct 8, 2019

Credit NHPR File Photo

Carroll County Commissioners voted two to one last Wednesday against a policy that would provide medication assisted treatment to inmates who aren't on that program before they get to jail.

But the Carroll County Jail superintendent still plans to move forward with the proposed policy. 

Medication assisted treatment provides anti-opioid medications, in combination with counseling and behavioral therapies, to help people dealing with substance use disorders.

Jason Henry is the superintendent of the Carroll County Jail. According to state law, superintendents have the authority to adopt the policies they need to run the facility and provide proper medical care.

"We're doing a right thing for people who need help. What the community standards are, suboxone, MAT, and other stuff, all these things have shown, scientifically, for some people it really does help," he said.

Henry says because the commission did not approve the policy, paying for these services might get complicated.

So far, there are no inmates in Carroll County going through the program, because Henry says none have  met the criteria for medication assisted treatment. 

"When somebody does, as superintendent, I'm not standing in the way of the doctor's orders," he said. "It puts me in a bind. I'd rather not be  against my commissioners, but sometimes I have to do what I have to do." 

Earlier this summer, New Hampshire’s state prisons received funding to expand medically assisted treatment of alcohol and opioid use disorders.