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Community Health Network Foundation receives $100,000 grant to combat, prevent opioid addiction

For release on September 13, 2017

Efforts will focus on increased school-based prevention education, treatment capacity for adults suffering from addiction

Indianapolis, IN---Community Health Network Foundation recently received a $100,000 grant from the Indiana Network for the Prevention and Treatment of Opioid Addiction (INPTOA) to combat and prevent opioid addiction in Central Indiana. The Foundation is also contributing $100,000 of its own funds to double the impact of this work.

The program is two-fold. First, trained Community Health Network staff will implement the “This is (Not) About Drugs” prevention program for students in sixth and ninth grades, overseen by a full-time prevention specialist who works in partnership with Community’s school-based caregivers. The program will help to educate students on the dangers of prescription and illegal substances and provide referrals and resources to those abusing or dependent on such substances. Second, a medical assistant will offer much-needed support at Community’s Medication Assisted Treatment clinics, where providers prescribe long-acting medications including Vivitrol, Subutex and Suboxone. The goal will be to increase capacity at these sites of care and reach a higher volume of present and future clients suffering from addiction.

Funding will serve a nine-county Central Indiana region including Clinton, Hamilton, Hancock, Howard, Johnson, Madison, Marion, Shelby and Tipton counties. In total, efforts are expected to impact nearly 30,000 Hoosiers.

“Our state is facing a devastating opioid addiction epidemic,” said George Hurd, vice president of Behavioral Health Services at Community Health Network. “Addressing this crisis means meeting the needs of those struggling with addiction today and offering the education necessary to prevent addiction tomorrow. This grant funding will help us do both, reaching more Hoosiers in an impactful and meaningful way, and we are grateful for the opportunity to serve our neighbors in this way.”

In 2016, former Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller seeded the creation of a statewide network of Indiana foundations with a $500,000 matching grant from Indiana’s Consumer Protection Education Fund. These foundations collectively matched $500,000 by December 31, 2016. This network was named the INPTOA. The INPTOA’s purpose is to provide single county and multi-county collaborative grants to assess, prevent, and treat opioid addiction, and provide community financial support for housing, employment, monitoring, and counseling. Their priority is placed on awarding grants to underserved areas of Indiana and for innovative approaches to addiction. This network was found necessary because opioid abuse and addiction is a nationwide epidemic and Indiana is one of the most affected states.

In fact, as of 2014, Indiana ranked 15th worst in the nation for rate of overdose deaths, and, since 1999, the number of deaths from overdose has risen by more than 500 percent. While the 2014 U.S. rate of drug overdose deaths stood at 14.7 per 100,000 people, Indiana’s was at 18.2 per 100,000 people.

“The efforts we will be undertaking are all about preventing as much heartbreak as possible for Hoosiers and their families,” said Joyce Irwin, president and CEO of Community Health Network Foundation. “We are honored to have received this funding from INPTOA and grateful to be able to match the financial support with our own funds thanks to the generosity of our donors. We look forward to stewarding this significant support in order to efficiently and effectively meet the needs of men, women and children in Central Indiana.”

About Community Health Network Foundation
Community Health Network Foundation is the not-for-profit philanthropic organization of Community Health Network, Central Indiana’s leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them. Donations support patients, caregivers and Central Indiana communities. For more information about Community Health Network Foundation, visit eCommunity.com/foundation or call 317-355-GIVE.

Bridget Cleveland, Marketing and Communications Manager, Community Health Network Foundation
Bridget Cleveland
Marketing and Communications Manager, Community Health Network Foundation