N.H. Ponders How Best To Use Federal Funds to Fight Opioid Epidemic

Jul 21, 2018

By August 13, New Hampshire must submit its application for $23 million in federal funds to help fight the opioid crisis.   It's far from a blank check, however. The 81-page application includes numerous requirements and focuses on medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction, as well as prevention and recovery services.  Whether that includes mental health services and other approaches that address underlying causes of addiction is unclear.  Also, even as opioids continue to get much of the attention, methamphetamine has emerged as the new lethal drug.  Still, the influx of millions in funding is heartening for many on the frontlines of this opioid crisis. 

An excerpt from the federal application itself: 

The program aims to address the opioid crisis by increasing access to medication-assisted treatment using the three FDA-approved medications for the treatment of opioid use disorder, reducing unmet treatment need, and reducing opioid overdose related deaths through the provision of prevention, treatment and recovery activities for opioid use disorder (OUD) (including prescription opioids, heroin and illicit fentanyl and fentanyl analogs). These grants will be awarded to states and territories via formula. The program also includes a 15 percent set-aside for the ten states with the highest mortality rate related to drug overdose deaths.

For info on the meeting DHHS is holding today at 5:30 p.m. to gather public input on how to use the federal money, visit here

GUESTS:

  • Jacqueline Abikoff - Executive Director of Horizons Counseling Center and chair of the Board of Licensing for Alcohol and Other Drug Use Professionals. 
  • Cameron Ford  - Executive Director of Headrest, which provides addiction-recovery services and provides a 24-hour crisis hotline for N.H., Vermont, and parts of Maine. 
  • Dean Lemire - Assistant Project Director, Peer Recovery Support Services Facilitating Organization at Harbor Homes. He's also in recovery from heroin addiction. 
  • Timothy Rourke - Director of Substance Use Disorders Grantmaking for the N.H. Charitable Foundation. He also serves on the Governor's Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention Treatment and Recovery.