Health Management Associates (HMA) created the project “County Touchpoints in Access to MAT for Justice-Involved Populations” with the recognition that persons released from jail and receiving MAT frequently encountered judges, probation officers, child welfare workers, and other justice system personnel who did not consider the person to be “clean” or “drug free” if they were using MAT. Often, clients were encouraged or required by agencies to reduce or terminate MAT in order to qualify for services, be released from probation, or regain custody of their children. Prematurely reducing or terminating MAT places the individual at very high and preventable risk for relapse, overdose and death.
County Touchpoints has provided training on addiction treatment to hundreds of individuals working in six areas of the criminal justice and human service systems: Probation, Adult Collaborative Courts, Youth and Dependency Courts, Child Welfare and Human Services, Public Defenders and District Attorneys. In the next iteration of the program, the project is continuing to focus on working with counties through two new learning collaboratives:
- One learning collaborative provides technical assistance and addiction consultation to multi-agency teams from California counties interested in improving the outcomes of Child Welfare and Justice Systems for children and parents affected by Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and methamphetamine/stimulant use.
- The second learning collaborative provides technical assistance and addiction consultation to multi-agency teams from California counties interested in optimizing their approaches to one of two challenging populations with Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and methamphetamine/stimulant use in the justice system:
- Those with early problem substance use who encounter the justice system but are not detained and therefore may not be introduced to treatment options; and
- Those with a serious mental illness along with addiction.
Check out AddictionFreeCA.org to learn more about Justice System Touchpoints and other MAT Expansion Projects led by HMA.