Volume XIV, Issue X - September 2020


Danielle L. Kirby, Director

Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery

State Opioid Response Funding

The Illinois Department of Human Services/Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery (IDHS/SUPR) has received $36.7 million in federal funding to continue fighting the opioid crisis. Funding expands prevention, treatment, recovery and overdose response initiatives across the state. The State Opioid Response (SOR) federal grant is awarded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), a branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The opioid crisis, amplified by the devastation of COVID-19, affects the residents of the state of Illinois in profound ways. These federal dollars will help the state continue to address the opioid crisis during COVID-19. The programs funded by this award will provide critical services to help persons with opioid use disorder, assist those on a path to recovery, provide emergency lifesaving medication for people experiencing an opioid overdose and deliver a prevention and support message across the state.

The funding is immensely helpful for a population with ongoing challenges, especially during COVID-19. Utilizing a public health approach to the opioid crisis, SUPR targets outreach and increased access to services. Reducing stigma around substance use is a critical goal of the harm reduction services supported by this funding.

Funds will be used to continue the following initiatives:

  •  expanded access to Medication Assisted Recovery (MAR*) services for persons with opioid use disorders, including those in the criminal justice system;
  •  hospital screenings and linkage to community treatment programs for their patients; supportive housing and digital resources for persons in recovery from opioid use disorder;
  •  access to MAR for patients at federally qualified health centers;
  • recovery support services for pregnant and postpartum women with opioid use disorders; mentoring and coaching for medical professionals prescribing medications for opioid use disorder and continued support for the state's Helpline for Opioids and Other Substances; and
  • expansion for treatment of persons with stimulant use disorder, in response to rising rates of methamphetamine and cocaine use.

*(Medication Assisted Recovery (MAR) includes the use of evidence-based FDA approved medications (e.g., methadone, buprenorphine, naltrexone,) for individuals with a substance use disorder (SUD) who are in recovery. IDHS/SUPR recognizes that individuals who identify in recovery and take medications to manage their SUD are in recovery.)

For more information about the SOR grant, please contact Kathleen Monahan at Kathleen.Monahan@illinois.gov.

Additional information on SOR grants can be found at: https://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=105980.

If you or someone you know is experiencing problems with substance use disorder, call the state's Helpline for Opioids and Other Substances at 1-833-2FINDHELP (1-833-234-6343) Text "HELP" to 833234 or visit www.HelplineIL.org.