Albuquerque jail offers treatment for opioid addiction

September 6, 2021 GMT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Metropolitan Detention Center in Albuquerque has begun a program to give buprenorphine to people in jail who are already using it to treat their opioid addictions.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that the buprenorphine maintenance program can provide an average of 22 inmates per day with the medication.

Recovery Services of New Mexico -- a treatment organization run by BayMark Health Services -- received a contract to provide the medication at the jail late last year. The county signed a two-year contract agreeing to pay the organization just under $250,000 for services and $312,400 for the medication itself.

Recovery Services has been providing another medication-assisted treatment -- methadone -- in the jail for years.

For now, Recovery Services will provide buprenorphine only to those who had already been using the medication before they were locked up. However, Evan Gonzales, a spokesman for Bernalillo County’s Department of Behavioral Health Services, said, the county will explore expanding the program to start people on the treatment.