Medication Assisted Treatment Programs in Vermont State Correctional Facilities

Evaluating H.468 through a State by State Comparison
PRS Briefs
PRS Policy Brief 1718-03
Thursday, February 22, 2018

 Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) is an addiction treatment program that pairs therapy with medication to treat substance use disorders. Currently, Vermont (VT) has an extensive MAT infrastructure consisting of regional treatment “hubs” and community-based “spokes.” The state legislature is considering legislating that MAT beneficiaries should continue treatment within the incarceration system if they become incarcerated within ninety days of their most recent interaction with the program. In making this decision, legislators should consider the successes and failures of other MAT programs across the country. This report provides background on the opioid epidemic, federal laws and regulations, the current treatment and corrections infrastructures in VT, and medications used to manage opioid addiction. In addition, it compares the MAT program in the state of VT to the MAT programs in five others U.S. states—Missouri, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Kentucky, and Rhode Island—to show the differences and similarities that exist among these Department of Corrections MAT programs. This report also documents the concerns of stakeholders involved with the legislation of this program and makes recommendations for Vermont to expand its MAT treatment program.