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May 1, 2019

Guidelines for the Successful Transition of People With Behavioral Health Disorders from Jail and Prison

For individuals with behavioral health issues, reentry to the community following incarceration is a period of potential vulnerability if appropriate services are not in place. This publication offers 10 guidelines to promote the necessary partnerships between behavioral health and criminal justice professionals to ensure an individual’s successful transition from jail or prison to the community. Recommendations from the guidelines include universal screening, individualized treatment plans, continuity of care, and data sharing across agencies. This publication updates the work first conducted in 2013 by SAMHSA’s GAINS Center in collaboration with the Council of State Governments Justice Center. The guidelines brought together principles from the Adults with Behavioral Health Needs Under Correctional Supervision: A Shared Framework for Reducing Recidivism and Promoting Recovery; the Assess, Plan, Identify, and Coordinate (APIC) model; and evidence-based practices. The guidelines set out in this document help stakeholders incorporate evidence-based practices into their reentry processes. The guidelines are designed to support partnerships between criminal justice and behavioral health stakeholders. Through these collaborative partnerships providers are able to successfully identify individuals who need services, understand what services are needed, and determine how to meet these needs upon transition to community-based treatment and supervision. This publication is a valuable tool for professionals in behavioral health, corrections, and community agencies.

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