AZ prison inmate program aims to put dent in opioid addiction epidemic

Updated: Jan. 10, 2017 at 5:22 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Arizona is launching a program to try to curb at least part of the opioid addiction epidemic in the state.

Gov. Doug Ducey has issued an executive order creating a pilot program for about 200 state prison inmates who are addicted to opioids and who qualify for the state's version of Medicaid.

The inmates would volunteer to receive counseling and a drug called Vivitrol for at least six months after they're released from prison.

Vivitrol decreases the cravings.

The governor's office says, if the program reduces the recidivism rate and helps the former inmates get and hold jobs, then it will be considered a success and the program could be expanded to more Arizona prison inmates.

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