Utah State University Extension was recently awarded a $1 million grant for the Tribal and Rural Opioid Initiative from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).
The grant will fund an integrated opioid response effort that bridges prevention, treatment and recovery in Tooele County, with additional tribal outreach in the Uintah Basin area.
According to Sandra H. Sulzer, USU Extension health and wellness specialist and director of the Office of Health Equity and Community Engagement, rural communities are often critically underserved when receiving healthcare resources, which also extends to addiction prevention and treatment.
“The Centers for Disease Control shows that Tooele County currently has the second highest opioid-related mortality rate in the state,” she said. “Opioid-related emergency visits are also particularly high in Tooele at 1.3 times the state average.”
Sulzer said these challenges extend to reservations as well.
“By joining with tribal partners through the Tribal and Rural Opioid Initiative, we will better engage with groups often left out of prevention efforts,” she said. “The initiative will also target the Uintah Basin.”
Maren Wright Voss, USU Extension professional practice assistant professor of health and wellness, will serve as the Tooele County director for the program. She said she is pleased to get to work with the Tooele Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium founding partners to help bring critical prevention and recovery services to the area.
Voss said the consortium was founded by USU Extension in Tooele County, joining Valley Behavioral Health, the Tooele County Health Department and Mountain West Medical Center Emergency Department.
“The grant funding will amp up disease prevention efforts and offer alternative pain management programs which are so needed for responsible opioid management,” she said. “It will also address gaps in resources often found in rural areas like Tooele.”
The Rural Communities Opioid Response Implementation Grant runs from September 1, 2019, to August 31, 2022.
Writer: Julene Reese, 435-757-6418, Julene.firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact: Sandra Sulzer, 435-797-2925, Sandra.email@example.com
USU Extension Co-Sponsors Marriage Celebration
Utah State University Extension co-sponsors the Northern Utah Marriage Celebration held at the Weber State University Shepherd Union Building Friday, Feb. 8, from 4 to 9:30 p.m.Read More
USU Extension 4-H Refugee Team Succeeds at Robotics Competition
A team of teenage refugees from Cottonwood High School, including a number of Utah State University Extension 4-H members, competed at the Regional FIRST Robotics Competition and won in the Rookie Category. They will go on to compete at the FIRST World Robotics Competition in Houston on April 17.Read More
USU Extension Partners with Latinos in Action for Youth Leadership
Utah State University Extension, in partnership with Latinos in Action, will host the second annual Leadership Boot Camp Conference for middle- and high school-aged student leaders on the Utah State University campus from June 4 to June 7.Read More