NEW YORK, March 12, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE), a private, national organization focused on contributing sustainable and scalable solutions to the opioid crisis, today announced that it is making $10.1 million in grants to 19 organizations across the country. These inaugural grants are for projects addressing access to opioid use disorder treatment and services in urban, rural, minority, tribal, and low-income communities.
"In 2018, an estimated 130 Americans died every day from an opioid overdose and an estimated 2 million people are currently experiencing opioid use disorder," said Andrea Barthwell, M.D., Chair of FORE's Board of Directors. "These initial grants focus on improving access to lifesaving treatment. In the months ahead, we will announce additional funding opportunities that address other aspects of this multi-faceted crisis."
In response to its first request for proposals, FORE received responses from 443 organizations from 46 states. The 19 projects were selected after rigorous review by a panel of 50 independent experts from across the country. They include several projects that are developing or expanding models to better deliver treatment services to adults, adolescents, pregnant or parenting women, justice-involved persons, and uninsured populations. Other funded projects are addressing payment and regulatory policies to increase access to treatment or provide telehealth, mobile, and rural hospital services. In addition, a consortium of leading national organizations is receiving funding for initiatives to improve care delivery in emergency departments across the country.
Karen Scott, M.D., M.P.H., President of FORE, said, "Our objective is to identify and fund patient-centered, innovative, and evidence-based projects that will expand learning and offer solutions. These initial 19 grantees meet that objective. They are strong examples of piloting or expanding innovative approaches for improving access to treatment for populations at high risk of overdose."
"FORE is committed to determining what works, where it works, and why so that best practices can be disseminated and sustained," Dr. Scott added.
The 19 grantees with their project service areas and titles are:
National Emergency Medicine Consortium
These three organizations are leaders in improving care of patients with opioid use disorder in the emergency department and will work collaboratively to further advance that work across the country.
- American College of Emergency Physicians/Emergency Medicine Foundation
Meeting Patients at the Front Door—Initiating Opioid Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery in Our Nation's Emergency Department
- Massachusetts General Hospital
'Get Waivered' National: Increasing the number of emergency department physicians able to prescribe buprenorphine for treatment of opioid use disorder
- Public Health Institute (National and California)
California Bridge: Emergency Department Medications for Opioid Use Disorder Initiative
- State Policy Center for Opioid Use Disorder Treatment and Access
- Integrating Medications for Opioid Use Disorder into Primary Care: Innovative Payer and Provider Strategies for Improving Treatment, Engagement, Retention, Outcomes, and Disparities
- Improving Access to the Continuum of Care for Opioid Use Disorder for Low-Income Adolescents and Young Adults
STATE AND LOCAL INITIATIVES
- Strategic Plans to Combat Opioid Use Disorder in the State of Alabama
- Opioid Use Recovery, Honoring & Empowering Local Providers (OUR HELP)
- Illinois Free and Charitable Clinics Response to Opioid Use Disorder
Maryland and Michigan
- Training Peer Recovery Coaches to Promote Retention and Adherence to Medications for Opioid Use Disorder Among Low-Income Adults
- Treatment with Buprenorphine through Telemedicine in a Rural Criminal Justice Setting
- Improving Hospital Inpatient Management of Opioid Use Disorders in Rural Communities
Housing Works (New York City)
- Scaling up a Toolkit to Improve Retention and Adherence in Medications for Opioid Use Disorder Treatment
- Building Access to Care Through Community Health Centers to Treat Opioid Use Disorder/Establishment of North Carolina Regional Addiction Medicine Programs
- Jenna's Project: Supporting Women's Re-entry to Society from Prison and Re-connection with Children
- Don't Quit the Quit: Treatment Services and Culturally-Responsive Community Support for Pregnant and Parenting Women with Opioid Use Disorder
Allegheny Health Network (Pittsburgh & Western Pennsylvania)
- Mobile Community-Based Engagement and Retention for Persons with Opioid Use Disorder
Thomas Jefferson University (Philadelphia)
- Lowering Barriers, Saving Lives, Reclaiming Health: Integrating Medications for Opioid Use Disorder
- Enhancing and Expanding Medications for Opioid Use Disorder in Southern Appalachia Communities
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The Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE) was founded in 2018 as a private 501(c)(3) national, grant-making foundation focused on addressing the nation's opioid crisis. FORE is committed to funding a diversity of projects contributing solutions to the crisis at national, state, and community levels. FORE's mission is to convene and support partners advancing patient-centered, innovative, evidence-based solutions impacting people experiencing opioid use disorder, their families, and their communities.
Contact: Myrna Manners, Manners Dotson Group, 718.986.7255, [email protected]
Quotes from FORE Grantees
"The FORE grant gives California Bridge the ability to extend the groundbreaking work we have done with addiction treatment in emergency departments to more states throughout the country. We are excited to work with other national partners to change medical practice to address the crisis of addiction that has devastated so many communities."
Serena Clayton, PhD
CA Bridge to Treatment, Public Health Institute
"FORE and the Dogwood Health Trust have made it possible for UNC Health Sciences at MAHEC, working in collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, to expand access to life-saving treatment for individuals who are at greatest risk for overdose in North Carolina – those living in rural communities and those without health insurance.
This funding will support training and technical assistance for community-based clinics across the state to provide patient-centered, evidence-based treatment for opioid use disorder. It will also establish a network of regional clinical hubs with addiction treatment specialists. We are confident this work will save many lives."
Jeffery E. Heck, MD
Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC)
State: North Carolina
"We're extremely honored to have been chosen by FORE as part of their inaugural grant program that aims to address the opioid crisis that is ravaging communities across the country. Patients admitted to the hospital with an unidentified or untreated substance use disorder (SUD) are at risk for leaving against medical advice, needlessly suffering from untreated withdrawal symptoms and not accessing or being offered treatment. This project will use an Experience Based Co-Design model in which clinicians, staff and people with a SUD co-design a new process that will increase screening and treatment while reducing variability in service delivery. The funding from FORE allows us to use this innovative approach to build on our existing framework and increase access to people with a SUD within our rural communities across the state."
Anne Diefendorf, MS, RDN, LD
Associate Executive Director and Vice President, Quality & Patient Safety
Foundation for Healthy Communities
State: New Hampshire
"FORE funding will help transform the Get Waivered initiative from a hospital and state initiative to a truly national campaign aimed at making a real difference. FORE's support will allow us to make a broad impact using our foundation in behavioral economics and digital health. It offers an opportunity to get a new generation of emergency clinicians ready to join the fight against our nation's opioid epidemic."
Alister Martin, MD, MPP
Massachusetts General Hospital
"Support from FORE will allow CCHS to substantially expand and enhance the outpatient care of patients with substance use disorders at CCHS' health centers in Kanawha County, WV. Specifically, the number of active patients will be more than doubled over the next two years and the funding will expand the support for patients in recovery with expanded pain management options, education and employment training, and the ability to treat the whole family around the person in recovery, especially the children.
The staff and board of CCHS are grateful to FORE for enabling us to build on the solid base of relationships with our patients and our community partners to expand access to addiction treatment and offer greater support to people choosing to re-enter active family and community life."
Amber Crist, MS
Cabin Creek Health Systems (CCHS)
State: West Virginia
"The awarded funds from FORE will help us achieve our goal of building statewide capacity to prevent, identify, and treat substance use problems for our patients while allowing them to remain close to home. Through this award, we will help find solutions to barriers in getting medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to our rural and remote communities. The funding will help empower local providers to provide MAT through consultation with Addiction Medicine experts. The funding will also help health care organizations ensure no one falls through the cracks, by leveraging new data analytic tools to identify and reach out to those who experience an opioid use disorder, ensuring they know that help and hope are available."
Cody Chipp, PhD
Director of Behavioral Health
Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC)
"FORE funding allows our organization to broaden our ongoing research activities around the opioid crisis to identify successful provider and payer strategies for increasing the provision of medications for opioid use disorder (OUD) in primary care settings. Initiation and long-term retention in evidence based medication treatment are major challenges in addressing the opioid crisis, and FORE funding will enable our organization to build actionable evidence to inform policies and clinical interventions that increase treatment access and improve outcomes among individuals with OUD. In the context of high rates of overdose and the growing presence of fentanyl, there is a critical need for research to identify and disseminate best practices for increasing access to and retention in life-saving treatment."
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
State: New Jersey
"NASHP is honored to receive one of the first round of grants from FORE. States are on the frontline of the opioid crisis and this grant will be instrumental in allowing NASHP to support them in their critical work to ensure access to effective treatments."
National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP)
"Michigan State University and the University of Maryland are pleased to partner with FORE to examine a novel approach to engaging and retaining individuals from underserved communities in treatment for opioid use disorder. This funding will support critical research for developing a sustainable model for training peer recovery coaches to improve outcomes and promote the recovery process among this vulnerable population."
Michigan State University
State: Michigan and Maryland
"We are thrilled to be among the first FORE grant recipients. Decades of research show overwhelming evidence that medication-assisted treatment, when provided promptly, can save lives and reduce overall health care spending. With FORE's support, we will expand a tool kit of evidence-based behavioral health interventions and social supports to those communities most impacted by the opioid crisis. And we will use our place at the table to advocate for the sustainability of these strategies, particularly in light of New York State's current Medicaid redesign."
State: New York
"IAFCC's Project's key emphasis is to strengthen access to quality care for the uninsured and underinsured. Having the generous support of FORE enables us to increase our capacity towards addressing the epidemic by gathering evidenced-based resources and aiding our clinics in expanding their outreach and care to those most in need. IAFCC is excited to have the opportunity to work with local, state, and national leaders that will guide us in the implementation and evaluation of this initiative for our 52 Free and Charitable Clinics in Illinois."
Opioid Project Resource Coordinator
AmeriCorps VISTA/Illinois Association of Free and Charitable Clinics (IAFCC)
"What's missing in addressing this crisis are the voices of the people with opioid use disorder (OUD). I've had the privilege to learn from my patients who have been affected by OUD throughout their lives, allowing me to better understand where they are coming from and what their needs are. This funding allows us to not only expand our medication-assisted treatment (MAT) program, but also to evaluate our program guided by a Participant Advisory Council that will help inform an implementation toolkit to offer other primary care practices and centers seeking to start or improve their own MAT programs. We're thrilled to have the support of FORE, which will be integral in making these goals a reality and ready to work."
Lara Weinstein, MD, MPH, DrPH
Thomas Jefferson University
"Funding from FORE has arrived at the perfect time! There is currently a limited number of medication-assisted treatment providers available to address the opioid epidemic and care for women who are pregnant, postpartum (and) breastfeeding with opioid use disorder (OUD) and living in the most rural areas of North Dakota. Funding from FORE supports the initiation of the Don't Quit The Quit Project. Many women who are engaged in treatment for OUD during pregnancy face increased challenges, not only because of their routine prenatal course and postpartum recovery, but because of the continued stigma that surrounds mothers with OUD. The Don't Quit The Quit Project supports and encourages mothers to maintain their recovery through these challenges; or in other words, 'Don't quit the hard work they are doing to maintain their healthy life choices and their sobriety.'"
University of North Dakota
State: North Dakota
"The FORE funding will allow UNC Horizons to take a critical and important step forward to coordinate and collaborate with the women's prison in North Carolina to help women with opioid use disorders who are leaving prison to prevent overdose death, improve their financial stability and independence with employment, maintain their drug abstinence, avoid recidivism and improve their use of positive parenting practices. To the extent this pilot project is effective, it holds great promise to serve as a model for the USA and beyond."
Hendrée Jones, PhD
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Horizons Program
State: North Carolina
"While efforts nationally to curb the opioid epidemic are often focused on meeting the needs of patients in urban and suburban settings, those in rural areas are in fact at increased risk for overdose and/or opioid use disorder given the barriers they face in accessing quality care and treatment. Stigmatized groups including the homeless and recently incarcerated often face similar challenges. At AHN, we seek to provide compassionate, high-quality care and to improve health outcomes for all populations. We are extremely grateful for the funding from FORE which will enable us to meet patients where they are and to engage them in ongoing care plans, regardless of where they might live or their social status."
Stuart Fisk, CRNP
Director, Center for Inclusion Health
Allegheny Health Network (AHN)
"We know opioid use disorder and other substance use disorders among low-income teenagers and young adults have far reaching consequences. While this vulnerable group is covered by Medicaid, there is a concerning lack of information about gaps in the continuum of care.
This award will help us assess critical gaps in care and identify promising new policies and strategies that can help close them. We will develop and disseminate actionable Medicaid policy information, leading to expansion of and improvement in substance use prevention programs and increases in rates of evidence-based care across the continuum, including prevention, screening, intervention, harm reduction, treatment and recovery services."
Senior Research Associate, Health Policy Center
"[Dr. Li] recently received a grant from FORE to combat the opioid epidemic in Jefferson County which allows her to have 2 initiatives. The first initiative is to develop a series of educational modules on Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) treatment. It is expected that training physicians who are in teaching roles and academic institutions will exponentially increase the number of providers skilled in the treatment of OUD. The second initiative is to expand access to OUD treatment through collaboration using telemedicine which will lay the groundwork for a sustainable OUD telemedicine clinic. By partnering with Cahaba Medical Center, and incorporating telehealth technology, we can expand the workforce of physicians who provide evidence-based addiction services and develop sustainable models to improve access to addiction and recovery services. Achieving these 2 initiatives proposed in the grant will significantly expand the access to OUD treatment, and efficiently combat the opioid crisis in AL."
University of Alabama at Birmingham
SOURCE Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE)