St. Louis County Executive announces additional funding for opioid action plan

Berkley, Mo. – The Saint Louis County Department of Health (DPH) is pleased to announce the receipt of $340,000 in new state funding as part of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2018 Opioid Overdose Crisis Cooperative Agreement. DPH will use the funding to continue implementing key components of the county’s opioid action plan.

“It’s exciting to see progress on key initiatives in the county’s opioid action plan,” County Executive Steve Stenger said. “Continued investment in these coordinated efforts will save lives in our community.”

The new funding will be used to increase staff for improved collection of public health data related to opioid use and abuse as well as education, rescue and treatment initiatives. Strengthening public health data will help address the lack of comprehensive, timely information on nonfatal opioid overdoses.

As DPH works with partners countywide to design a reporting process for nonfatal overdoses, the new data will be used to monitor trends, ensuring patients most in need are being treated.

“Streamlining overdose reporting will create a comprehensive picture of the burden of opioid overdoses in the region,” Spring Schmidt, acting co-director of the Department of Public Health said. “The expanded tracking system will help identify changes in overdose burden and help direct resources effectively.”

The award is a one-year contract and is administered at the state level by the Department of Health and Senior Services. Since DPH intensified efforts to combat the opioid addiction and overdose crisis about two years ago, the department has received almost $4 million in funding to address the crisis, including a $2 million SAMHSA grant to initiate medical treatment for opioid addiction in the St. Louis County Jail.

The county’s opioid action plan can be accessed here.