HHS Awards Grants to Combat Opioid Crisis

The agency will administer $485 million to all 50 states

HHS Secretary Tom Price, M.D., has announced the agency will provide $485 million in grants to help states fight opioid addiction. The initial funding is the first of two rounds provided by the 21st Century Cures Act, and will be administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

All 50 states will receive funding, according to a report, as well as the District of Columbia, four U.S. territories, and the free associated states of Palau and Micronesia. More specifically, funding will go towards prevention, treatment, and recovery depending on need.

“As I begin my tenure as Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), I do so with a profound commitment to addressing this public health crisis as one of our top three Departmental priorities,” said Secretary Price in his letter. “Opioids were responsible for over 33,000 deaths in 2015; this alarming statistic is unacceptable to me. We cannot continue to lose our nation’s citizens to addiction. Through a sustained focus on people, patients, and partnerships, I am confident that together we can turn the tide on this public health crisis."

The HHS says it has prioritized five strategies: strengthening public health surveillance, advancing the practice of pain management, improving access to treatment and recovery services, targeting availability and distribution of overdose-reversing drugs, and supporting cutting-edge research.

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