Youturn Health, a virtual all-in-one support platform for substance misuse and mental health-related challenges, announced today that they will provide support for up to 375 people from the Onondaga County Justice Center and Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office Correction Department.

Between 2019 and 2020, Onondaga County had the 5th highest number of methamphetamine overdose deaths outside of New York City. Additionally, the county saw a 19% increase in opioid-related deaths from 2020 to 2021.

Of those booked into the two facilities covered by this partnership, an estimated 60% of people had indicators of substance use disorder based on screening at booking. Less than 50% of individuals with a history of mental illness receive treatment while in jail, which means they are not getting they support they need to succeed during re-entry. There is a high risk for adverse outcomes for those being released from incarceration. Without adequate support, these individuals are likely to rely on harmful coping mechanisms, which can lead to recidivism or even death.

The Youturn Health program prepares participants to leave incarceration through comprehensive education, guidance to navigate the related challenges of re-entry, as well as setting and working toward individualized goals for sustaining recovery post-release. The program includes:

  • Education through an extensive video library of insightful and inspirational stories that help former inmates and their families understand the nature of stress, substance misuse, and mental health.
  • Peer coaching from state-certified, NAADAC-credentialed professionals with lived experience either as someone who has been incarcerated or as a family member of someone who has been incarcerated. Peer coaches use their training and lived experience to help people achieve their personalized goals for recovery in re-entry.
  • Ongoing assessments to help coaches optimize their interactions and focus with the participants on how they are improving over time.

“Teaming up with Youturn Health is a reflection of our county’s commitment to improve inmates’ lives and address some of the core causes of recidivism,” said Dr. Karen Buck, Onondaga Contract Compliance Administrator. Youturn Health works collaboratively with Onondaga County staff, Wellpath, and Crouse Health to provide comprehensive support for participants as part of their re-entry transition.

Youturn Health is also working with Syracuse University researchers to assess outcomes of this program related to participant progress and to further evaluate the effectiveness of the collaborative approach between Youturn Health and the county. The goal is to ensure that the overall process of working together to support participants and their families is efficient and effective.

About Youturn Health

Youturn Health is a virtual support program to help individuals and families struggling with stress, substance use, and suicidal ideation using evidence-based strategies. Core components of the program include an online learning library, peer coaching, ongoing assessments, and family support. Learn more at