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Jail to become first in Massachusetts to dispense methadone

GREENFIELD, Mass. —  A rural jail is set to become Massachusetts’ first correctional facility to dispense methadone to inmates for opioid addiction treatment.

Franklin County Sheriff Christopher Donelan said Tuesday his office received state and federal approvals to establish a methadone clinic at its jail in Greenfield. The jail will soon offer all three federally-approved opioid treatment medications onsite.

Methadone is generally only dispensed under special circumstances in jails and prisons because it’s an opioid, but resistance to it is fading .

Rhode Island and Vermont recently began widely offering methadone and other addiction medications at their facilities, and Connecticut provides methadone at some of its facilities.

In Massachusetts, the state Department of Corrections is seeking approvals to dispense methadone and some county jails must start providing it to inmates by next month .

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