LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- Drug use, particularly opioids, is the reason many of the inmates find themselves behind bars but a new pilot program aims to help.

The Metro Government announced on May 10 they were selected to participate in a national program that will expand medication assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder in jails. The program will provide guidance on how to overcome barriers to providing opioid treatment, including staff training and guidance for jail officials in creating treatment guidelines, managing administration of the medications, and educating jail staff about addiction.

Louisville Metro Department of Corrections Director Mark Bolton noted that the nationwide opioid crisis has led LMDC to triple the number of residential substance abuse treatment beds, as it works on initiatives to manage those at risk while in custody.

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“The next logical step is to expand treatment for opiate use disorder for individuals who remain in custody,” he said. “We have the commitment to help this population and now with support of our federal, state and local justice partners, we will have additional resources to help people confined in the jail more effectively combat substance use.”

Up to this point LMDC has become one of the region's largest mental health and substance abuse treatment and detox facilities. And in partnership with others, LMDC has already initiated some MAT programs.

In all, 15 counties across the country are participating in this program.

FULL LIST OF SELECTED SITES 

Camden County, NJ

Chesterfield County, VA

Clackamas County, OR

Cook County, IL

Cumberland County, ME

Durham County, NC

Eaton County, MI

Hudson County, NJ

Ingham County, MI

Jefferson County, KY

Lewis and Clark County, MT

Marion County, IN

Orleans, St. Bernard, Plaquemines Parishes, LA

Shelby County, TN

St. Louis County, MN