Grant to help combat opioid misuse, abuse

Posted at 12:32 PM, Aug 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-31 12:32:50-04

Michigan has been seeing an increase in unintentional fatal drug poisonings, and in 2012 was ranked 10th in the nation in per capital prescribing rates of opioid pain relievers.

To help deter this epidemic, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services will receive a $2.25 million grant from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention. The grant will cover a three-year period and is part of the CDC’s Prescription Drug Overdose: Data-Driven Prevention Initiative.

The funding will support the state’s ongoing effort to advance and evaluate state-level prevention of opioid misuse, abuse and overdose efforts to reduce the number of prescription drug deaths in Michigan, states a release from the department.

“Addiction is an epidemic that is impacting families all across our state and country,” said Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, chair of the Prescription Drug and Opioid Task Force. “Michigan is taking action by focusing on community prevention and early detection, and working to connect people with better treatment options. This federal grant will help in our efforts to provide more second chances for Michiganders.”

From 1999 to 2014, the state saw a four-fold increase in unintentional fatal drug poisonings, according to the release. Michigan’s participation in the initiative is an important part of the CDC’s efforts to identify and enhance evidence-based programs across the nation to make progress in the fight against opioid overdoses.

“This is an excellent opportunity to expand coordination of efforts and resources to address the complex problem of opioid misuse and abuse in our state,” said Dr. Eden Wells, MDHHS chief medical executive.  “These funds will support efforts with state and community partners to develop a statewide strategic plan that will help Michigan communities build capacity at the local level.”

The grant will help with efforts to improve data collection and analysis of opioid misuse, abuse and overdose; develop a strategy to combat the epidemic; and work with communities to develop larger, more comprehensive opioid overdose prevention programs.

For more information about the grant and initiative, click here.