Health and Criminal Justice Program leader to speak at U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy on addiction treatments for the incarcerated

June 16, 2016

The United States Office of National Drug Control Policy has invited a UMass Medical School Health and Criminal Justice Program leader to speak at an event about substance use disorder treatments for justice-involved populations at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, D.C., June 17.

Julie White, LICSW, senior director of operations for the Health and Criminal Justice Program, will sit on two roundtables: “Adoption of MAT for Justice-Involved Populations” and “Stakeholder Engagement: What Can Stakeholders Do To Adopt MAT For Justice-Involved Populations In Their Training, Program, and Policies and Overcome Challenges?” The discussions will take place during the daylong event, Medication Assisted Treatment in Justice-Involved Populations, which intends to raise awareness of best practices in correctional settings.

White will talk about UMass Medical School’s correctional health practice collaborative focused on implementing evidence-based treatments for substance use disorders and hepatitis C in correctional facilities. Four New England correctional systems are participating in the collaborative, made possible by grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality.

The collaborative is being led by Warren J. Ferguson, MD, professor and vice chair of Family Medicine and Community Health at UMass Medical School and director of academic programs for the Health and Criminal Justice Program.

With 22 years of experience in justice-involved health care, White has expertise in behavioral health with a focus on opioid abuse. Prior to joining Commonwealth Medicine, she spent eight years assisting correctional facilities in New England with implementing medication-assisted treatment.

About 80 percent of the prison population has a substance use disorder and more than 17 percent are infected with hepatitis C, according to recent research.

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