Times Staff Writer
and Hannah Pollock
The medically-assisted opioid treatment program is “up and running” at the Adams County Prison.
The prison received the grant award from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) for residential substance abuse treatment (RSAT) to implement the Vivitrol program locally, Adams County Prison Warden Katy Hileman said Tuesday.
The medical treatment, known as Vivitrol, “is a non-addictive, once-monthly treatment” used “to prevent relapse in opioid dependent patients,” according to naltrexone drug’s website. “Vivitrol blocks opioid receptors in the brain while you work with the psychological aspects of counseling,” the website indicates.
However, the award amount, which was $87,463 with a county match of $29,154 according to the RSAT application in May, “will change” due to a modification request, Hileman said.
The request sought to move “full-time equivalent hours for staff involved in the program from the other grant” to the RSAT grant, which would “not use additional county funds, as the match will come from current, budgeted staff salaries,” according to Hileman.
Since the program rolled out, Hileman said staff has been looking for participants, including putting posters up throughout the prison.
“When it comes to someone’s treatment, the person has to want this. They need to be engaged and be the driver,” Hileman said, noting individuals must make that decision for themselves.
The grants cover the cost of 30 individuals’ participation in the program each year, Hileman said.
The program gives participants the time to get assistance with life skills, bringing an educational component to it, according to Hileman.
“It’s not just sticking them with a shot,” Hileman said.
Inmates would receive two injections if they go through intensive outpatient treatment, but others who forgo the outpatient component and meet the minimum qualifications would get one injection, Hileman previously said.
Adams County Solicitor Molly Mudd said staff do not “recruit” individuals for the Vivitrol program.
“They need to come find us,” Mudd said.
The combined grants requested total approximately $409,965 as of May for the Transition to Recovery Initiative, according to Hileman.
Laura Rowland, director of Resource Development, and Hileman put forth both grant applications. One of the grants seeks federal dollars, while the other is for state funds, Rowland previously indicated.
The grant funding would cover the cost of a full-time case manager, who would be the lead facilitator of the initiative, according to Hileman. The person in that position would oversee the entire program, in addition to performing case management work and treatment assistance, said Hileman.
Funding also will go toward Vivitrol, behavioral health assistance, and counseling, according to Mudd.
The county is seeking more funding in the first year of the treatment program due to administrative costs with staff and probation coordination, according to Mudd. In the second year, Mudd anticipates it could be reduced by $20,000.
Mudd previously noted how counseling is a “critical part” of the program.
Staff has already been trained and most of the preliminary work is in place to get the program started, according to Mudd.
Hileman said the prison only needs a third treatment specialist to complete its team.