Biden-Harris Administration hosting Families of Overdose Event today at the White House

Today, on International Overdose Awareness Day, the Biden-Harris administration is recognizing all those who have lost someone to an overdose. President Biden declared August 27 through September 2 as Overdose Awareness Week to focus the nation’s attention on the devastation caused by illicit fentanyl and other drugs. During this week of recognition, we reaffirm our commitment to beating this epidemic — in memory of those we have lost and to protect the lives we can still save.

Today, in support of President Biden’s Unity Agenda efforts to beat the overdose epidemic and save lives, the Biden-Harris administration is announcing more than $450 million to strengthen prevention, harm reduction, treatment, and recovery support services and crack down on illicit drug trafficking. Later today, the Biden-Harris Administration will host family members from across the country at the White House who have lost loved ones to a drug overdose. Families will have the opportunity to share their personal stories, and discuss ways we can all work together to end the overdose epidemic.

Saving lives is the North Star of President Biden’s National Drug Control Strategy, and after a years-long period of rapid increases in the overdose death rate from 2019 – 2021, the United States is now seeing continued progress in flattening this trend. The latest CDC report released earlier this month marked 13 months straight of leveling off of overdose deaths. The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to building on this progress and doubling down on all efforts to reduce drug overdose deaths, save lives, and make our communities safer. These latest Biden-Harris administration-wide efforts will:

Strengthen Prevention Efforts

  • The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) is announcing approximately $20.5 million to 164 new Drug-Free Communities (DFC) Support Program awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 2023. The new awards join 587 previously awarded continuation grant recipients, for a total of 751 funded community coalitions, the highest number in the program’s 25-year history. This represents a total FY 2023 investment by the Biden-Harris Administration of more than $93.8 million to support evidence-based prevention efforts locally.
  • ONDCP is investing an additional $1 million dollars into its Real Deal on Fentanyl campaign with the Ad Council. The campaign aims to reach young people, who are the fastest-growing age group to experience opioid overdose in the United States. Since launching in fall 2022, the campaign has garnered 946.9M impressions.

Support State and Local Treatment and Recovery Efforts

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is awarding $279 million in Overdose Data to Action (OD2A) grants to states and localities to expand harm reduction strategies, link people to life-saving care, and make the latest data available so that we can get ahead of the constantly evolving overdose crisis. For the first time, in addition to funding state health departments to prevent drug overdose, CDC is providing funding to directly support city, county, and territorial health departments, filling a distinct gap in funding for local communities. Both the state and local efforts include a focus on collecting and using data to inform action, engaging people with lived experience, and addressing health disparities. CDC tailored these funding opportunities to best serve partners at state, local, and territorial levels. State health departments may be best equipped to serve state-level surveillance efforts, as well as state-wide Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) practices. Local health departments can leverage proximity to local communities to better engage in harm reduction and linkage to and retention in care efforts. Funded recipients will be able to respond more quickly, more effectively, and more equitably to their constituents’ needs, using and translating data to drive action steps that reduce overdose deaths and related harms in communities as fast as possible.
  • The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is awarding more than $80 million to rural communities in 39 states to support key strategies to respond to the overdose risk from illicit fentanyl and other opioids. These awards will support interventions such as distributing the lifesaving overdose reversal drug naloxone to prevent fatal overdose; creating and expanding treatment sites in rural areas to provide medications to treat opioid use disorder; expanding access to behavioral health care for young people in rural communities; and, caring for infants in rural areas who are at-risk for opioid exposure or experiencing symptoms related opioid exposure.
  • The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is awarding more than $57.6 million to connect Americans to substance use treatment and recovery support services, including:
    • $1.7 million to the Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers Program, which establishes or implements comprehensive treatment and recovery centers. These centers provide a full spectrum of treatment, harm reduction and recovery support services to address the opioid epidemic and ensure access to all three Food and Drug Administration-approved Medications for Opioid Use Disorder (MOUD). 
    • $29.6 million to the Promoting the Integration of Primary and Behavioral Health Care Program, which promotes the improvement of integrated care models for behavioral health care and primary/physical health care to improve the overall wellness and physical health status of adults who have a serious mental illness (SMI); adults who have co-occurring mental illness and physical health conditions or chronic disease; children and adolescents with serious emotional disturbance (SED) who have co-occurring physical health conditions or chronic disease; individuals who have substance use disorders (SUD); or individuals who have co-occurring substance use and mental disorders (COD); and promotes the implementation and improvement of bidirectional integrated care services.
    • $1.2 million to the Recovery Community Services Program, which provides peer recovery support services to individuals with SUD or COD, including those in recovery from these disorders. The program’s foundation is the value of lived experience of peers to assist others in achieving and maintaining recovery. These services, in conjunction with clinical treatment services, are an integral component of the recovery process for many people.
    • $735,000 to the Recovery Community Services Program-Statewide Network Program, which strengthens community-based recovery organizations, their statewide networks of recovery stakeholders and specialty and general health care systems as key partners in the delivery of state and local recovery support services through collaboration, systems improvement, public health messaging and training conducted for or with key recovery groups.
    • $6.6 million to the Rural Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Training Grant Program, which recruits and trains EMS personnel in rural areas with a particular focus on addressing SUD and COD. Recipients will be expected to train EMS personnel on SUD and COD, trauma-informed, recovery-based care for people with such disorders in emergency situations and, as appropriate, to maintain licenses and certifications relevant to serve in an EMS agency.
    • $15.8 million to the Treatment for Individuals with Serious Mental Illness, Serious Emotional Disturbance, or Co-Occurring Disorders Experiencing Homelessness Program, which provides comprehensive, coordinated and evidenced-based services for individuals, youth, and families with SMI, SED, or COD who are experiencing homelessness or are at imminent risk of homelessness (e.g., people exiting jail or prison without a place to live).
    • $2 million to the Treatment, Recovery, and Workforce Support Grant Program, which implements evidence-based programs to support individuals in SUD treatment and recovery to live independently and participate in the workforce. Award recipients will be expected to ascertain gaps in the workforce and coordinate statewide employment and training activities for participants enrolled in their program with SUD in treatment and recovery.

Disrupt And Dismantle Illicit Drug Trafficking Operations

  • ONDCP is announcing more than $18.9 million in FY 2023 discretionary funding for its High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Program, adding to the more than $275 million provided in base funding released earlier this year. This new allocation of funds will support discretionary projects in 33 regional HIDTAs and the National HIDTA Assistance Center. The funding includes $6.75 million for the creation and expansion of Crime Gun Intelligence Centers (CGICs) in 27 regional HIDTAs. These CGICs are operated in partnership with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and are a critical part of addressing the violence that frequently accompanies illicit drug trafficking. Taken together, these measures will help save lives and make our communities safer.

Read President Biden’s full Proclamation on Overdose Awareness Week HERE.


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