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Oregon receives $4.5 million in federal grants to fight opioid crisis

Rep. Greg Walden applauded the grants, which will help to fund health centers in southern and eastern Oregon.

Posted: Aug 9, 2019 2:20 PM

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Health centers across Oregon will receive more than $4.5 million in grants funding to help combat opioid addiction, according to Representative Greg Walden's office. The grant awards were announced on Thursday by the U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services.

“The opioid and substance use disorder crisis has hit every community across our great state and nation. Combating this deadly epidemic is no small task and requires an all-hands-on-deck approach,” said Walden.

In all, the funds are to be distributed to 27 health centers around the state. About $1.5 million of those funds will go to nine locations in Walden's 2nd District — including Boardman, Klamath Falls, Medford, La Pine, Prineville, Hood River, Grants Pass, and Enterprise.

These grants follow the Trump administration's "Five-Point Opioid Strategy," which emphasizes medication-assisted treatment for those suffering from substance abuse. The initiative also promotes integrating behavioral health services and the treatment of substance use disorders.

“From implementing and expanding substance use disorder services at HRSA-funded health centers to increasing support and training to our nation’s behavioral health workforce to improving access to treatment in rural areas, today’s announcement demonstrates the Administration’s commitment to ending this crisis,” said HRSA Acting Administrator Tom Engels.

Rep. Walden also highlighted the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, a sweeping bill he championed and helped to author, as an important piece of the puzzle in beginning to address the opioid epidemic.

“This money is just one important aspect of the fight. Combined with the initiatives in [the SUPPORT Act] — other grant funding our state has received, the hard work of medical professionals and law enforcement working on the front lines of this crisis, and continued support from the Administration, we are doing more than ever before to get help to our communities,” Walden said.

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