Rogers announces $2 million in emergency grants to help with substance use treatment in Kentucky during COVID-19 pandemic
Kentucky received $2 million in emergency grant funding Monday from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) to help address substance use disorders and serious mental illnesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Congressman Hal Rogers helped secure the SAMSHA emergency grants as part of the federal legislation to address immediate needs related to the coronavirus national health crisis.
“With many social restrictions and new safety procedures in place, we must ensure treatment and assistance is still readily available for individuals suffering with drug addiction and mental illnesses. I applaud SAMSHA for expediting this funding for Kentucky only weeks after it was approved by Congress, to expand crisis services for individuals who need it the most,” said Rogers, a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee.
SAMHSA expects the current national crisis of COVID-19 to contribute to an increase in the number of Americans grappling with such disorders. People throughout the nation will struggle with increases in depression, anxiety, trauma, and grief.
“SAMHSA is working quickly to get funding to Americans because we know how urgent the situation is,” said Elinore F. McCance-Katz, MD, PhD, the HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and the head of SAMHSA. “Before the pandemic, there were nearly 58 million Americans living with mental and/or substance use disorders, according to our National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The stressors and trauma of the COVID-19 pandemic exponentially increase the urgency of connecting individuals to treatment.”
The funding will be used by the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services to conduct screening, assessment, brief intervention and treatment with homeless individuals residing in temporary shelters.
It will also expand crisis service capacity for individuals with serious mental illnesses and substance use disorder in need of medical care, transitional housing and behavioral health services. The funding will also enhance telehealth services.