Award-Winning Overdose Prevention

Image Description] Harm Reduction Coalition staff pictured with NYS DOCCS Commissioner, NYS DOCCS Chief Medical Officer, Queensboro Correctional Facility Superintendent, NYSDOH Executive Deputy Commissioner and NYSDOH Director of AIDS Institute.


We are the recipients of an award from the New York State Commissioner of Health for partnering with the Department of Corrections to prevent overdose.


The Commissioner’s Special Recognition Award was the result of a unique collaboration between Harm Reduction Coalition, New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) and NYS Department of Health AIDS Institute to provide opioid overdose prevention training to incarcerated individuals whose release date is approaching.


A pilot training began in early 2015 at the Queensboro Correctional Facility. To date, over 950 incarcerated individuals have been trained in opioid overdose recognition and response. The overdose trainings are now part of the facility’s inmate orientation. A refresher training is offered to inmates shortly before their release, along with the option to receive a naloxone kit free of charge upon release. The initial trainings were conducted by the Harm Reduction Coalition and then transitioned to DOCCS staff once trained.


In mid-2015 the program was expanded to the Edgecombe Correctional Facility and the Lincoln Correctional Facility, with three additional facilities expected to join before the end of 2015. The project’s goal is to have opioid overdose prevention trainings in all 54 State Correctional Facilities.


Read more about the unique collaboration here.