Bob Nolan

Bob Nolan

CAPE MAY COURT HOUSE — The Cape May County jail received a $300,000 grant from the state to help inmates who have substance abuse disorders.

The New Jersey Department of Human Services, through the Division of Mental Health and Addictions, gave the grant to the jail for the Medication Assisted Treatment, or MAT, program.

County Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton said the grant will fund medications, a discharge/reentry coordinator, counseling and additional medical staff as well as reimbursement for custody staff for transport to outside providers and observation in the medical unit.

“This is a big step in our coordinated effort to combat opioid addiction in Cape May County,” Thornton said.

The intent of the funding is to provide medically assisted treatment in the jail to inmates who self-report the use of opiates upon admission and are medically eligible based on standard tests.

Eligible inmates will be offered the addiction-treatment drug Suboxone during their time at the jail and upon discharge will receive a “bridge dose” of three days and be linked to a community provider to continue their prescription and receive additional treatment.

Individuals who have a prescription for MAT upon admission to the jail will be provided continuity of care during their incarceration, county officials said in a news release.

The start date for the MAT program is Nov. 15, and it is anticipated it will serve up to 300 inmates, county officials said.

The Atlantic County jail has a similar program it is seeking to expand via in-house services, county Executive Dennis Levinson said last month.

Currently, the Atlantic County jail has a mobile “Recovery on Wheels” dispensing unit through the John Brooks Recovery Center, the designated treatment provider for the jail.

Many admissions to the jail are discharged within 48 to 72 hours, Sheriff Robert Nolan said. Data has indicated that people released from the jail without some type of medically assisted treatment are significantly more likely to overdose once they are in the community, Nolan said.

Contact: 609-272-7202


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