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Ohio County Offers Vivitrol to Inmates to Fight Opioid Crisis

Last Updated: October 26, 2022

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Last year, a record of 4,050 Ohioans died of drug overdoses. Meanwhile, addiction rates continue to climb in the state, reaching epidemic status.

Because of the severity of the situation, many in the state are attempting novel solutions to the problem. For instance, Franklin County officials have chosen to allow inmates being released from jail to receive an injection of naltrexone in an effort to start them off on the right foot with their re-entry into society.

Anti-Addiction Injection

Franklin County officials say that 520 inmates a year are expected to receive injections of naltrexone, which chemically prevents the high that addicts experience when using. This federally funded program will cost approximately $400,000 per year, with each shot at approximately $769. The county will also spend money on medical evaluations and program oversight. Inmates receiving this shot must be willing to continue drug abuse treatment after their release and have a diagnosed substance use disorder.

How Can This Help?

Those seeking treatment and ways to get and stay clean need help and support. For inmates, the transition from jail is stressful. It is a time when relapse is particularly likely to happen. By receiving the injection upon release, freed inmates are better equipped to stay away from drugs outside of prison.

The drug naltrexone, sold as Vivitrol, offers benefits by keeping opioid molecules from connecting to opioid receptors, according to The Columbus Dispatch. This will prevent and block any possible high for using opioids. Vivitrol is non-addictive. With the help of this drug, the people released will be more likely to get housing and jobs and keep them.

Ohio is seeing far too many overdose deaths, most of them from heroin. The same article in The Columbus Dispatch reports that Franklin County drug overdose deaths are up 88 percent from a year ago and are on pace to account for 536 overdose deaths this year, 80 percent of them related to heroin, manmade heroin or its relatives.  It is clear that something must be done.

Treatment Costs

While critics say that the cost of administering Vivitrol to inmates is very high, those costs are far outweighed by the cost of the continuing drug epidemic in Ohio. When the cost of emergency treatment for overdoses, treatment facilities for addiction, incarceration for drug-related crime, and support services are all factored in, it is clear that the drug epidemic is extremely expensive for the state and its residents. If providing Vivitrol to inmates can help people get on the road to recovery, it is a step in the right direction.

Drug Treatment Facilities in Ohio

Drug addiction is devastating to those with substance abuse disorders, their families, and the community as a whole. Luckily, there are premier treatment facilities in Ohio that work with those dealing with drug addiction and help them on their journey to recovery. Good treatment centers are vital to success.

The Recovery Village Columbus is a multidisciplinary center where individualized, comprehensive addiction treatment plans are created by expert counselors and other professionals. Our knowledge of cutting-edge addiction treatment options and our kind, compassionate care make our facility stand out among treatment providers in the state. If you or any of your loved ones are battling addiction today, please reach out to us right now to learn about admission.


Our Recovery Advocates are ready to answer your questions about addiction treatment and help you start your recovery.