ADVISORY: USDA LAUNCHES RESOURCES WEBSITE TO HELP RURAL COMMUNITIES ADDRESS OPIOID CRISIS
Feb 26, 2018
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) launched a new website highlighting available resources to assist rural communities responding to the ongoing opioid crisis. The new website can be found here (www.usda.gov/topics/opioids).
The intent of the website is to provide rural leaders with resources, information, and best practices to respond to and manage the opioid crisis, which claimed over 42,000 lives in 2016.
In particular, the website highlights three USDA programs that may assist rural communities in combating the opioid epidemic:
- The Community Facilities Loan and Grant Program (CF): These loans and grants can be used to build, renovate, equip, or rehabilitate essential community facilities such as hospitals, mental health clinics, withdrawal centers, educational facilities, and more. To learn more about this program, contact USDA Distance Learning and Telemedicine Program staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Distance Learning & Telemedicine Grants Program (DLT): These grants can be used to purchase and install equipment that uses broadband to help rural communities remotely connect to educational and health care services. Telemedicine can help rural health care facilities access and provide specialized treatment for patients in need. To learn more about this program, contact your local state USDA Rural Development office.
- The Rural Health and Safety Education Competitive Grants Program (RHSE): These grants are for projects that develop or implement individual and family health education programs that help rural communities address significant health issues. Education programs specializing in prevention and reduction of opioid abuse in rural communities are given priority for funding. To learn more about this program, visit the National Institute of Food and Agriculture website.
The website also provides case studies, best practices, and a list of other agency resources that may be available to impacted communities.