North Carolina Awarded $2 Million Emergency Grant For COVID-19 Behavioral Health

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North Carolina has just been awarded a massive $2,000,000 grant from the national Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in order to support our state’s behavioral health response to the COVID-19 crisis.

The new grant will go toward North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service’s (NCDHHS) work toward helping the increasing need of NC residents with mental health issues and substance abuse in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant is part of a larger program that now totals over $110 million awarded to states and federally recognized tribes and territories.

“A clear symptom of the COVID-19 pandemic is fear and anxiety caused by disruption in the lives of many North Carolinians — people have lost jobs, their daily routines and their sense of stability and belonging,” commented Kody H. Kinsley – North Carolina’s Deputy Secretary for Behavioral Health and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. “This funding is an important investment toward the response we must rally to support the behavioral health and wellness of every North Carolinian.”

The new funds will be used to strengthen the Hope4Healers helpline (919-226-2002), which connects health care workers and their families to licensed clinicians through telehealth and provides short-term support. The funds will also help fight North Carolina’s opioid epidemic by supporting access to Opioid Treatment Programs (OTPs) in areas of the state particularly hard hit economically by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as additional supports for individuals transitioning from jails and prisons who have existing substance use disorders.

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