Journal article

The impact of opioid substitution therapy on mortality post-release from prison: retrospective data linkage study

Louisa Degenhardt, Sarah Larney, Jo Kimber, Natasa Gisev, Michael Farrell, Timothy Dobbins, Don J Weatherburn, Amy Gibson, Richard Mattick, Tony Butler, Lucy Burns

Addiction | WILEY | Published : 2014


AIMS: Release from prison is a high-risk period for mortality. We examined the impact of opioid substitution therapy (OST), for opioid dependence during and after incarceration, upon mortality post-release. DESIGN: A cohort was formed of all opioid-dependent people who entered OST between 1985 and 2010 and who, following first OST entry, were released from prison at least once between 2000 and 2012. We linked data on OST history, court and prison records and deaths. SETTING: New South Wales (NSW), Australia. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 16,453 people released from prison 60,161 times. MEASUREMENTS: Crude mortality rates (CMRs) were calculated according to OST retention; multivariable Cox regress..

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Awarded by National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

Awarded by NHMRC

Funding Acknowledgements

Funding for the work undertaken for this manuscript was provided by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC, #1005668). This project was also supported by a grant from the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) through the Criminology Research Grants Program, Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. The views expressed are the responsibility of the author and are not necessarily those of the AIC. L.D., S.L. and R.P.M. are supported by NHMRC Research Fellowships (NHMRC #1041742, #1035149 and #1045318, respectively). The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of NSW is supported by funding from the Australian Government under the Substance Misuse Prevention and Service Improvements Grants Fund. We wish to acknowledge all data custodians for providing access to the data sets used in this study: the NSW Ministry of Health (PHDAS data set), the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (ROD data set) and the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (NDI data set). Thanks to Judy Trevena for her work on the initial preparation and cleaning of data sets; Pia Salmelainen (NSW Health) for expert advice about the PHDAS data set and Jacqui Fitzgerald (BOCSAR) for advice regarding BOCSAR data sets. We also wish to thank the members of our Indigenous Reference Group: Michael Doyle, Anton Clifford, Megan Williams and Luke Bell.