Yates County's opioid addiction treatment programs and others across the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions are among serving 16 high-needs counties receiving the bulk of $25.2 million in federal funding to enhance treatment services for people struggling with opioid use disorders.

Finger Lakes Area Counseling & Recovery Agency (FLACRA) will receive $1.4 million, and Trinity of Chemung County will receive $1.1 million.

The state Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) received the funding earlier this year through the Opioid State Targeted Response grant program administered by the federal Department of Health and Human Services. According to today’s announcement, the goal of the grant is to increase access to treatment, reduce unmet need, and reduce overdose-related deaths. The funding is being targeted to high-needs counties statewide and will be used for initiatives including mobile treatment, telehealth capabilities, the expansion of medication-assisted treatment, and statewide prevention and recovery programs.

State Sen.Tom O’Mara (R,C, I-Big Flats), a member of the Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction, welcomed the announcement “New York State has taken critical steps over the past several years to strengthen the local and statewide response to the heroin and opioid epidemic, with a particular emphasis on treatment and recovery services,” said O’Mara. “This new funding is critical to the expansion of treatment services and I’m glad that our region is being given urgent attention.”

Treatment programs serving 16 counties will receive the bulk of funding, including those serving Yates and Tompkins Counties in O’Mara’s 58th Senate District. The counties are designated “high needs” based on the number of opioid overdose deaths, hospitalizations involving opioids, and residents leaving the county to access addiction treatment services. The other high-needs counties are Tioga, Ontario, Oswego, Cayuga, Greene, Jefferson, Ulster, Sullivan, Madison, Erie, Onondaga, Saratoga, Niagara and Montgomery.

The 16 high-needs counties will also receive an additional $1.8 million to fund services such as training providers in medication-assisted treatment, transitional treatment for people reentering the community from county jails and state correctional facilities, and naloxone training and purchasing.