US Awards $1.3M for Drug Overdose Response in Arkansas

US Awards $1.3M for Drug Overdose Response in Arkansas

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Thursday announced $1.3 million in grants supporting efforts to respond to drug overdoses rural Arkansas communities. 

In a news release, the department said the money will fund key strategies to respond to the overdose risk from fentanyl and other opioids.

The department $1 million will be used to establish treatment sites to expand access to medication used to treat opioid use disorder. The use of medication to manage opioid use disorder is the standard of care, but not always readily available.

The remaining $300,000 will be used to help rural communities respond to specific and immediate needs, including the distribution of life-saving opioid overdose reversal medications.

Across the country, more than 100,000 people die each year from overdose. 

Carole Johnson, administrator of the Health Resources & Services Administration, said funding based on population size or other broad-based rubrics can overlook the vital treatment and response needs of rural communities.

"That’s why the investments we are announcing today are targeted to rural communities and tailored to the unique challenges of helping rural health care leaders expand access to treatment and build recovery pathways to prevent overdose," Johnson said.