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What if I told you that Methadone and Buprenorphine treatment programs for opiate offenders in prisons have been shown to be effective in lowering post-release opiate abuse but 75 of these inmates nation-wide do not receive this treatment Is it wrong that so many prisons across the nation do not provide this proper treatment for these inmates It most certainly is Programs such as Methadone Maintenance Treatment MMT and Buprenorphine Maintenance Treatment BMT are not necessarily designed to reduce recidivism but to get the offender off of the opiate which in most cases is heroin With over 4000 prisons currently being run in the United States alone its no surprise that MMT and BMT programs do not reach every opiate offender Such treatment programs are designed to slowly get the offender off of the drug by relieving the craving of the drug building up a mental tolerance and suppressing opioid abstinence Joseph et al 2000 p 349 The necessity of these programs is evident when looking at their effectiveness and outcomes Repeat heroin offenders that are processed through prison-based drug treatment programs such as MMT and BMT have a much lesser chance of re-abusing heroin than those who do not go through the treatment programs The history of prison-based drug treatment programs can be traced back to the 60s when it was undertaken as a research project at the Rockefeller University in New York according to Joseph et al In his review of the history of MMT programs he tells us that the research project came about because in the 50s in New York heroin injection became the leading cause of death for individuals ages 15-35 The research project started with a small sample size of just 6 male heroin addicts that have suffered with their addiction for more than eight years Through trial and error with different drugs substitutes such as morphine and other drugs the research team then investigated a long-term narcotic
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