State Will Receive $17 million to Combat Epidemic

HARTFORD – The Connecticut Congressional Delegation today announced two new federal grants from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) worth a total of $17 million to support Connecticut’s work to combat the opioid epidemic by expanding access to treatment and supporting near real-time data on the drug overdose crisis.

“This new federal funding is a vital step forward in combating the opioid epidemic across our state,” said the delegation. “Each of us have witnessed the devastating impact of this epidemic on families in every community in Connecticut, and have heard loud and clear that more help is needed to support individuals struggling with addiction and their families. We will continue working with our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure that Connecticut gets the critical funding needed to support the services that play a significant role in this fight.”

“This supplemental federal funding will further strengthen our existing opioid-related initiatives as we continue to combat the opioid epidemic in our state,” said Governor Ned Lamont. “We cannot allow opioid addiction to continue consuming our families and residents. By expanding funding for our opioid efforts, we can work to prevent fatal overdoses and encourage more individuals to seek treatment and begin their path of recovery. We are grateful to our federal delegation for this funding, that will help save lives or prevent someone from going down the path of addiction altogether.”

Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced over $301 million in grants to help state and local governments track overdose data as closely to real-time as possible and support them in work to prevent overdoses and save lives. Funding for the first year of a three-year cooperative agreement is being awarded to 47 states, Washington, D.C., 16 localities, and two territories. The Connecticut Department of Public Health received $5.9 million in grant support. Over the past decade, reporting of mortality data has improved substantially, mainly due to improvements in reporting by state vital records offices. The CDC works with public health agencies to help improve the quality, timeliness, and specificity of surveillance data in states and communities across the nation, and these funds will continue to support this critical work. States may report nonfatal data as quickly as every two weeks and report fatal data every six months. 

In addition, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announced $932 million in continuation funding to support the second year of the State Opioid Response (SOR) program that provides flexible funding to state governments to support prevention, treatment, and recovery services in the ways that meet the needs of their state. These grants have been awarded to all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and U.S. territories – including over $11 million to Connecticut – to help expand access to medication assisted treatment. Earlier this year SAMHSA released approximately $500 million in supplementary SOR grants, including $5.8 million to Connecticut.