The Indiana Rural Opioid Consortium has received $200,000 in new funding to expand and continue to build a network in Hoosier communities that lack resources to tackle the opioid crisis.
The consortium was established last year by the Indiana Rural Health Association (IRHA) to create regional treatment and recovery models.
Ally Orwig is a IRHA project coordinator and says says much of their work has been to build a network of state and local organizations.
"Really bringing together parties that have not been working together before to see where there might be some synergies between our organizations," says Orwig.
Orwig says part of the new federal planning grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration will be used to heighten awareness.
"Education is going to be really big for us this year," says Orwig. "We want to increase education on medication-assisted treatment and we also want to really support providers that are on the front lines in these communities."
This can be done through care coordination programs and community partnerships to address social needs of patients. Other efforts of the consortium include stigma reduction and peer support activities.
The counties were targeted for expansion because of high overdose rates. The 11 counties are Boone, Cass, Fayette, Franklin, Jennings, Lawrence, Orange, Scott, Union, Washington and Wayne.