Montana Receives New Opioid Response Funding
(August 14, 2019)
Montana has received $3.9 million of federal funding to support its opioid response, reports Montana Public Radio. The Health Resources and Services Administration’s funds will support new substance abuse programs in the state. About $1 million will expand rural opioid treatment programs across Montana. Another $900,000 will help train addiction professionals to better administer treatment and support recovery. Beyond just doctors, the funds will train students preparing to treat addiction. The remaining $2 million will expand Montana’s substance abuse and mental health treatments. These treatments include integrated behavioral therapies.
Montana Healthcare Foundation CEO Aaron Wernham believes the state’s opioid response will improve because of the new funding. He’s specifically hopeful that those integrated therapies will help. Integrated treatment combines mental health specialists with primary care doctors to treat patients’ physical and emotional factors that can cause addictions. “All those kinds of social factors that can make it harder to heal, all in one place,” he said. “So, this emphasis on integrated team-based care in these grants is I think is very important and new.” As recently as 2015, Wenham’s company found that nearly 90% of addicted Montana residents didn’t receive care. But thanks to state and federal focus, addiction treatment providers and medically-assisted treatments have already become much more widely available.