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Addressing Substance Use Disorders in America's Jails: Clinical Guidelines for Withdrawal Management



Application Deadline: Oct 28, 2020

Sponsoring Organization

Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)


Awards funding for the development of clinical guidelines and protocols to be used in jails for the safe medical management of substance withdrawal among the detainee population. Assists jail administrators, correctional officers, and jail-based clinicians in implementing the best evidence-based clinical practices for managing substance withdrawal medically that also address the practical needs and challenges, such as preventing drug diversion, of providing care in a correctional facility.

Guidelines developed under this program must address the following areas of substance withdrawal management:

  • Rapid withdrawal from the following substances either individually or in combination: opioids, benzodiazepines, alcohol, methamphetamine, and cocaine
  • Identifying indicators that necessitate immediate referral to medical facilities outside of jail for individuals experiencing withdrawal
  • Screening for risk of suicide, specifically opioid withdrawal-potentiated suicides
  • Medication maintenance for detainees entering jail with prescriptions for opioid or antipsychotic medications
  • Transition to buprenorphine maintenance or detoxification, based on detainee preference, for facilities without access to methadone maintenance treatment
  • Standards for dosage and administration of agonist medication within the facility to patients who desire it after appropriate withdrawal management
  • Access to prescriptions upon release of custody and transition to care providers in the community, including recording sharing among providers

Required program activities include:

  • Convene an expert committee to inform the development of the clinical guidelines
  • Conduct an environmental scan of existing guidelines for withdrawal management of opioids, benzodiazepines, alcohol, methamphetamine, and cocaine, individually or in combination, for adults 18 years and older, including special populations
  • Incorporate findings from the first two activities to create a detailed content outline for the product
  • Produce an initial draft and final version of the guidelines and protocols that have undergone expert review

Amount of Funding

Award ceiling: $298,500
Project period: 10 months
Estimated number of awards: 1
Estimated total program funding: $298,500

Who Can Apply

Applications may be submitted by nonprofit organizations, universities, and other organizations committed to improving the standard of care in correctional facilities and can demonstrate a history of or be willing to partner with another organization with experience in setting clinical standards around medication-assisted treatment (MAT) and developing operational protocols within a correctional facility.

Applicant organizations must have the organizational capacity and project management capabilities to successfully complete the project, including the ability to convene an interdisciplinary expert advisory committee that represents key stakeholders, such as correctional healthcare, addiction medicine, and jail administration.

Current Comprehensive Opioid, Stimulant, and Substance Abuse Program (COSSAP) grantees, their contractors, and consultants are ineligible for this opportunity.

Geographic Coverage


What This Program Funds

New Program • Operating Costs and Staffing

Application Process

Application instructions, requirements, and other information about the online application process are available in the funding announcement.

Application form
Applicant webinar recording and slides
Applicant frequently asked questions


For programmatic or technical assistance questions:
Deann Jepson

Topics This Program Addresses

Healthcare Workforce • Justice System • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) • Methamphetamine • Opioids • Pain Management and Opioid Prescribing • Suicide and Suicide Prevention • Treatment