Cureus. 2022 Feb 19;14(2):e22379. doi: 10.7759/cureus.22379. eCollection 2022 Feb.


Background and objectives In recent years, there has been an increase in the US imprisonment rate. A substantial percentage of those incarcerations are for drug-related offenses. The authors investigated the relationship between the pattern of substance use and drug-related offenses across a broad spectrum of various sociodemographic attributes of the incarcerated population in the United States. Methods Cross-sectional data from the 2016 Survey of Prison Inmates conducted by the Bureau of Judicial Statistics were extracted with inmates who reported possession of a drug at the time of arrest as a primary outcome of interest. Using SAS 9.4 statistical software (SAS Institute Inc., Cary, USA), the authors used multivariate analyses to determine the odds ratios between various sociodemographic attributes of the inmates and possession of substance at the time of the arrest. Logistic regression analysis for age groups in relation to substance possession at the time of arrest is presented in the form of an adjusted odds ratio and their respective confidence interval at p ≤0.5. Results Out of the total 23,798 inmates who reported possession of a drug at the time of arrest, 34.07% were Non-Hispanic Whites, and 31.5% were within the age group of 25-34 years. Only 59.47% of inmates were employed 30 days before the arrest, and 58.02% had less than a high school education. Different patterns of drug use were linked with different types of drugs found in their possession at the time of the arrest. Possession of cannabis at the time of arrest was highest in the age group 18-24 years compared to other age groups (odds ratio: 1.362; 95% CI: 1.159 – 1.602). Inmates with a history of stimulant or hypnotic use were more likely to have another psychoactive substance during a time of the arrest. Only 8.46% of inmates had psychiatric and psychological treatment as part of their sentence. Conclusions A large proportion of incarcerations in the US is because of drug-related offenses, with most of the burden on the younger age group. Inmates should receive psychiatric and psychological treatments for substance use as part of their sentencing while in prison and after release as a form of targeted intervention for this vulnerable group.

PMID:35321067 | PMC:PMC8935861 | DOI:10.7759/cureus.22379

Source: ncbi 2

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