Persons who abuse or are dependent on opioids are at elevated risk for arrest. Co-occurring behavioral health problems may exacerbate that risk, although the extent of any such increase has not been described. This study examines such risk factors among 40,238 individuals with a diagnosis of opioid abuse or dependence who were enrolled in the Massachusetts Medicaid program in 2010. Medicaid data were merged with statewide arrest data to assess the effects of co-existing mental illness, substance abuse, and previous arrests on arrest during 2010. Persons with serious mental illnesses (psychotic and bipolar disorders) and those with two or more pre-2010 arrests had significantly increased greater odds of arrest. We believe this to be the first study examining effects of co-occurring risk factors on arrest in a large population with opioid dependency/abuse. These findings identify predictors of arrest that could be used to design interventions targeting specific co-occurring risk factors.
- Co-occurring psychiatric illness,
- Criminal justice involvement,
- Opioid dependency and abuse
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/william_h_fisher/128/