HHS awards $1.5B in grants to combat opioid crisis

HHS awards $1.5B in grants to combat opioid crisis

Thursday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced it will distribute $1.5 billion as part of its two-year State Opioid Response (SOR) and Tribal Opioid Response (TOR) grants.

Administered through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the grants will help states and tribes provide community-level resources for individuals needing help with opioid use prevention, treatment, and recovery support services.

“The Trump Administration continues to provide historic levels of support for treating Americans with substance use disorders because the COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t put a pause on our country’s opioid crisis,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “We’re committed to a science-based approach for fighting the opioid crisis, focusing these State and Tribal Opioid Response grants on providing the gold standard for treatment: medication-assisted treatment with appropriate psychosocial services and community supports.”

The grants will allow states to develop tailored approaches to the opioid use disorder and/or stimulant use disorder crisis happening in their communities. According to HHS, the SOR and TOR programs provide evidence-based medication to treat opioid and stimulant use disorders, as well as providing psychosocial services and community support.

Funding for each state is varied based on the stat’s proportion of people with substance use disorder or opioid use disorder, and the state’s proportion of drug overdose deaths. Nine states, West Virginia, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Kentucky, and the District of Columbia, will receive additional funding as the top ten areas of the country hardest hit by the opioid crisis.