Providence Journal – August 5th
Josiah “Jody” Rich is a professor of medicine and epidemiology at Brown University. Rosemarie Martin is an associate professor in the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences at the Brown University School of Public Health. Brandon del Pozo, who served as a police officer for 23 years, contributed to this commentary.
On July 19, The Providence Journal reported a Wyatt Detention Facility correctional officer and four others had been charged in a “suboxone smuggling scheme” involving “70 loose strips and a “brick” of 100 suboxone strips” found in a cell. The warden commended his staff “who work tirelessly to provide a safe, humane environment for the detainees, as well as protecting the public and staff.”
Such a statement suggests that presence of buprenorphine (contained in Suboxone) creates an unsafe and inhumane environment for detainees and is dangerous to the public and staff.
This is not the case. Buprenorphine saves lives in prisons and communities.
Even unprescribed buprenorphine provides life-saving treatment for opioid addiction. It is one of the most common and effective treatments for opioid use disorder (aka opioid addiction).