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PA Awarded $26 Million in Federal Funding to Help Combat Opioid Abuse Crisis

April 20, 2017

US Department of Health and Human Services announced the award of $485 million in grants to help all 50 states and four territories combat opioid addiction. The funding, the first of two rounds provided for in the 21st Century Cures Act, will be provided through the State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The funding is a key part of the federal government’s continued commitment to working with governors to combat the evolving opioid crisis and to ensure federal funding supports clinically sound, effective, and efficient programs.

Pennsylvania will receive $26,507,559 in grant funding—the fourth largest grant award. The size of the funding award is based on each state’s rate of overdose deaths and unmet need for opioid addiction treatment. Pennsylvania proposes to use the funding to support a comprehensive array of prevention, treatment, and recovery services including:

  • Improving access to clinically-appropriate treatment and recovery services
  • Enhancing the commonwealth’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program
  • Improving quality of pain management prescribing practices
  • Expanding implementation of warm hand-off referral practices to increase the number of patients transferred directly from the emergency department to substance use treatment
  • Increasing community awareness of opioid use disorder issues and resources through public awareness activities

The project budget includes a comprehensive needs and capacity assessments to identify gaps and resources from which to build upon existing substance use prevention and treatment activities.

HAP applauds this funding announcement and the federal government’s sustained focus on addressing the evolving opioid crisis. The work supported by this grant aligns with HAP’s efforts to support our member hospitals, health systems, and other key stakeholders in improving the health care community’s response to the opioid epidemic. HAP welcomes this and other opportunities to collaborate and partner with the commonwealth and other stakeholders to move forward in this critical work necessary to solve this pressing public health crisis.

In addition, HAP will host a May 4 workshop in Warrendale and a May 17 workshop in East Stroudsburg to provide clinical leaders, stakeholders, and community partners with to share promising practices for preventing and treating issues related to opioid use disorder. Information about both programs is available online.

For more information on HAP’s physician efforts related to the opioid epidemic, contact Michael J. Consuelos, MD, HAP’s senior vice president, clinical integration. 

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