Officials in Ohio report Suboxone, used to treat opioid dependence, is being smuggled into prisons in the state, The Columbus Dispatch reports.
Prison workers in a number of states have discovered the drug partially dissolved on the backs of postage stamps, in the pages of books, and pasted between the folds of envelopes, the article notes. Other prison officials around the country have reported finding Suboxone pills sewed into seams of clothing and stuffed into drawstrings of sweatpants, and crushed pills in shoes and magazine spines. A Maine corrections official noted that some people douse letters in perfume to try to fool drug-sniffing dogs.
While some prisoners are using the drug to get high, others are trying to ease withdrawal symptoms, officials said. Many prisons do not provide medication-assisted treatment for inmates who are addicted. Withdrawal symptoms can include cramps, vomiting and diarrhea, according to the newspaper.
Suboxone is used by the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction only in select treatment at the Franklin Medical Center, which houses 460 inmates for medical reasons, according to spokeswoman JoEllen Smith. Treatment with Suboxone is not “a common practice,” she added.