Terre Haute, Ind. (September 1, 2023) — The Indiana Rural Health Association (IRHA) is thrilled to announce its successful acquisition of the Rural Communities Opioid Response Medication Assisted Treatment Access Program funding from the esteemed Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). This funding marks a significant step forward in the ongoing battle against Substance Use Disorders (SUDs) in rural areas.
Over the course of three years, IRHA, in collaboration with its partners LifeSpring Health Systems and the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health (FSPH) ECHO Center, will be at the helm of an initiative aimed at expanding the availability of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for various SUDs. This initiative will be executed by establishing five permanent MAT access points and a mobile unit access point strategically positioned within the targeted service area.
The rural counties that will be directly benefited by this program include Orange, Crawford, Perry, Spencer, and Harrison. This endeavor will culminate in amplifying MAT access, obliterating geographic barriers, and bridging the gap between treatment and those in need.
One of the primary challenges faced in these rural communities is the impediment posed by transportation and distance to essential care. The strategic placement of additional MAT access points is a decisive response to this challenge, providing a diversified range of treatment avenues. The secured funding will also facilitate support for indigent care and medications, ensuring that even those financially constrained can access vital MAT prescriptions.
Under the astute leadership of Amnah Anwar, MPH, MBBS, the IRHA team will orchestrate this groundbreaking endeavor. Lauren Perryman, LCSW, Senior Vice President of Recovery and Forensic Services, heads the accomplished LifeSpring Health Systems team. Additionally, the exceptional team at the FSPH ECHO Center, led by Andrea Janota, MPH, Director of the Indiana University Indianapolis (IUI) ECHO Center, will bring its expertise to bear on this transformative initiative.
A Peer Recovery Specialist ECHO program will be established in parallel with this program, further cementing IRHA's commitment to a holistic approach to recovery. This initiative is set to dismantle multiple barriers to MAT access, culminating in a significant stride towards improved healthcare equity and community well-being.
Originally posted on the IRHA website: Indiana Rural Health Association Acquires Funding for New Medication-Assisted Treatment Program