The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4090.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - Board 1

Abstract #43803

Treatment needs of recently incarcerated prisoners and training school inmates in two states

William E. McAuliffe, Ph D, Psychiatry, Harvard University Medical School, 875 Massachusetts Avenue, 7th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02139, 617-864-9115,

Due current policy, a growing number of adult and adolescent prisoners have substance abuse problems, but the precise percentage that meet clinical critieria for needing treatment is mostly unknown. This study conducted structured interviews with random samples of adult state prisoners in Rhode Island (n=198)and Alaska (n=208) and adolescent training school inmates in Rhode Island (n=118)who were incarcerated in the past year. The instrument included the substance abuse items from the Diagnostic Interview Schedule (DIS-IV). In the past year, most of the respondents (82% RI adults; 81% RI adols; 79% AK adults)met standard criteria for presence of a substance use disorder; in at least two thirds of all three samples the diagnosis was dependence. About half the respondents received treatment in the past year, and a third of the adults who did not received treatment would have sought it. However, only 11% of their adolescent counterparts wanted treatment. Two thirds of the adults and one third of the adolescents who received treatment wanted more. The reported level of treatment need is the highest reported in the literature, and the level of demand for treatment was also high except among the adolescents. Few state correctional treatment systems have enough services to meet this level of need and demand, and the potential value of drug courts is clear.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Access to Care, Prisoners Health Care

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Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Improving Treatment Services to At-Risk Populations Poster Session

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA