Take-Home Naloxone Kit Distribution: A Pilot Project Involving People Who Use Drugs and Who Are Newly Released from a Correctional Facility [2017]

Due to a recent increase in opioid overdoses in Canada, new harm reduction strategies are emerging. One of these strategies is take-home naloxone (THN) kits for individuals who use drugs being released from correctional facilities. Given the efficacy of naloxone for overdose reversal, the distribution of this medication to drug users upon release from incarceration has the potential for an impact on the incidence of drug-related death among this population. This group is at risk of overdose post-release due to lowered opioid tolerance and drugs of unknown strength. In this article, we report on the findings of a THN kit program for newly released inmates. This pilot project embodied a strong collaborative spirit between a provincial corrections facility and a not-for-profit harm reduction agency. Due to the success of this pilot project, this program was rolled out provincially in correctional centres across Alberta, overseen by the provincial health authority.

Em M. Pijl, Stacey Bourque, Madison Martens, Ashley Cherniwchan
Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Vol. 59, No. 4, October 2017