Indiana receives $18 million in federal grants to fight opioid crisis

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced Wednesday that Indiana will receive $18,147,223 in grant funding to combat the opioid crisis by expanding access to treatment and supporting near real-time data on the drug overdose crisis.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced more than $900 million in new funding for a three-year cooperative agreement with states, territories, and localities to further the understanding of the opioid overdose epidemic and to scale-up prevention and response activities, releasing $301 million for the first year.

“Our country is seeing the first drop in overdose deaths in more than two decades, more Americans are getting treatment for addiction, and lives are being saved,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “At the same time, we are still far from declaring victory. We will continue executing on the Department’s 5-Point strategy for combating the opioid crisis, and laying the foundation for a healthcare system where every American can access the mental healthcare they need.”

U.S. Senators Todd Young and Mike Braun applauded the announcement.

“As I travel across Indiana, it is clear that no community has been spared from the harmful impacts of opioids,” said Senator Young. “Today’s announcement is welcome news for Indiana as we fight to curb this devastating opioid epidemic. More funding will allow more access to prevention services and treatment options for countless Hoosiers struggling with opioid addiction across our state.”

“$18 million is significant funding to curb the opioid epidemic, and it will make measurable movement towards fixing this crisis,” said Senator Braun. “In addition to these valuable funds, I have offered bipartisan solutions that address the opioid crisis plaguing Hoosier families and communities.”

In August, HHS award Indiana $8.4 million to help fight the opioid epidemic by boosting access to substance abuse treatment and mental health services.

The HHS says efforts to expand treatment are succeeding. They released the following statistics in their announcement Wednesday:

Data suggests about 1.27 million Americans are now receiving medication-assisted treatment, out of roughly 2 million Americans with opioid use disorder. Since President Trump took office, the number of patients receiving buprenorphine has increased 28%, and the number of naltrexone prescriptions per month has increased 55%.

From 2017 to 2018, provisional counts of drug overdose deaths dropped by five percent, and overdose deaths from opioids went down 2.8 percent from 2017 to 2018. The number of individuals reporting pain reliever misuse decreased from 2017 to 2018 by 11 percent, with fewer than 10 million Americans now reporting misuse. Heroin-related opioid use disorder also decreased significantly among young adults.

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