Ducey Targets Opioid Addiction Among Arizona's Incarcerated

By Will Stone
Published: Monday, January 9, 2017 - 5:25pm

Gov. Doug Ducey is continuing to tackle the opioid epidemic in Arizona.

During his time in office, Ducey has tried to chip away at the opioid epidemic, from new prescription guidelines to setting up a substance abuse task force. Now he’s extending those efforts to the state’s incarcerated populations.

In his State of the State on Monday, Ducey announced a new executive order that will give inmates with a history of drug abuse access to medication-assisted treatment, such as the opioid-blocker Vivitrol.

“People leaving our prison system have an opportunity to be treated with this blocker before they walk out the doors to maximize their success of never ever going back," Ducey said.

More than 50 percent of inmates in the U.S. have a history of substance abuse.

Ducey has also sent a letter to the Arizona Medical Board instructing it to require that doctors undergo more rigorous continuing education for treating and identifying substance abuse.