Mobile Opioid Treatment Programs

Morristown Minute

NJ Human Services Awards Contracts to Opioid Treatment Providers to Expand Access to Mobile Treatment Programs.

The New Jersey Department of Human Services has awarded contracts to opioid treatment providers to increase mobile access to medication that supports recovery from substance use disorder and co-occurring substance use disorder.

“These contracts will help bridge the gap for New Jerseyans with substance use disorder who have limited treatment options due to barriers such as lack of transportation, unstable housing, and stigma,” said Commissioner Adelman. “At the Department, we understand that medication that supports addiction recovery is most effective when it is brought directly to those that need it the most, and these funds will target remote and traditionally underserved areas. We must ensure that all New Jerseyans in need have access to life-saving supports no matter where they live.”

The program will be funded through a blend of federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) State Opioid Response grant money and SAMHSA’s Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant.

The contracts were awarded to Integrity, Inc., which received $987,499, and John Brooks Recovery Center, which received $675,550.

Services are expected to begin this July and will continue through June 2023, which permits providers nearly a year to target those in need of medication that can support addiction recovery through mobile medication-assisted treatment vans.

Each provider will use $300,000 in funds to purchase a mobile outreach van to increase access to substance use disorder medications in underserved areas that would otherwise not be targeted through traditional treatment services.

Funds will also be used to increase access to case management and recovery support services, which includes referrals to primary or specialty providers for needed services.

Services will be offered in a safe and nonjudgmental environment and providers will ensure that diversity, inclusion, and cultural and linguistic competence are a part of the services they offer to those they serve.

As part of this program, each provider is responsible for serving a minimum of 100 people per year.

“We must do all we can to help individuals with substance use disorder by providing access to life-saving treatment. It is important to remove barriers to traditional treatment for individuals with substance use disorder and this is being made possible through these contracts,” said Assistant Commissioner Valerie Mielke, who directs the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services that will oversee the initiative. “We look forward to seeing mobile treatment programs increase opportunities for individuals to access treatment, particularly individuals who reside in underserved areas.”

This work builds upon a rule that came into effect last July from the Biden administration that worked to streamline registration requirements for opioid treatment programs that want to include a mobile component.

These mobile vans will run in addition to the five that operate in New Jersey. They serve individuals in Atlantic, Passaic, Mercer, Camden, and Union counties. The mobile van operated by Integrity, Inc. will target Essex County.

“I continue to urge anyone struggling with substance use disorder to call 1-844-ReachNJ; a 24-hour-a-day,7 day-a-week help line. Please don’t hesitate to call. Help is always available along the journey to recovery,” Commissioner Adelman said.

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