The Bulletin Board

Dartmouth Hitchcock gets nearly $1.5 million for opioid response in rural communities 

By: - August 31, 2023 11:19 am

All of the $1.49 million heading to New Hampshire will be sent to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center for two different initiatives. (Annmarie Timmins | New Hampshire Bulletin)

Rural communities in New Hampshire are slated to benefit from nearly $1.5 million addressing behavioral health needs of young people and neonatal exposure to drugs, by way of federal funding earmarked for Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon.

The Rural Communities Opioid Response Program, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration, has invested more than $500 million across more than 1,500 counties nationally since 2018. On Thursday, HRSA announced its round of funding for fiscal year 2023. 

Individuals who live in rural communities, HRSA said, often face challenges in accessing treatment and recovery services due to geographic isolation and transportation barriers, as well as limited mental health and substance use disorder care providers.

All of the $1.49 million heading to New Hampshire will be sent to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center for two different initiatives:

  • The first will develop and implement interventions to prevent, treat, and care for opioid-exposed infants. The funding ($498,282) will focus on systems of care, family supports, and social determinants of health. 
  • The majority of the funding – nearly $1 million – will go toward meeting the behavioral health needs of young people who live in rural places, by focusing on infrastructure to expand treatment and help prevent overdose.

“Far too many rural families have faced the devastation of overdose, and these deaths are felt deeply across rural communities, where often everyone knows someone lost too soon,” said HRSA Administrator Carole Johnson. “At the Health Resources and Services Administration, we know that funding based on population size or other broad-based rubrics can miss 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.”

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Hadley Barndollar
Hadley Barndollar

Hadley Barndollar covers climate, energy, environment, and the opioid crisis for the New Hampshire Bulletin. Previously, she was the New England regional reporter for the USA TODAY Network and was named Reporter of the Year by the New England Newspaper and Press Association. Email: [email protected]