NH opioid recovery center testifies on importance of federal funding

February 28, 2019

WASHINGTON — Federal grants are making a major impact in the state of addiction, according to the executive director of a lakes region recovery center who testified in Washington, D.C. Thursday. Daisy Pierce, Ph.D, director of Navigating Recovery of the Lakes Region, told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee how millions of federal dollars are changing Granite Stater's lives. Advertisement "We map out recovery, the whole life process, not just abstinence from alcohol and other drugs but everything that's involved in someone's life," said Pierce. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen invited Pierce to tell the Senate subcommittee about New Hampshire's new "hub and spoke" treatment system, and how a network of caregivers can connect with a patient 24 hours a day. "We now have technical assistance that allows all community service providers to have a shared coordination care plan, which means that if someone we work with ends up in the emergency department, we're immediately notified," said Pierce. Federal state opioid resource grants and expanded Medicaid mean more people have access to the ongoing recovery care they need, said Pierce. "It's affordable for somebody who may be experiencing other high costs of treatment," said Pierce. "We help somebody with employment, housing, transportation, getting their children back." Pierce, and others who run treatment centers across the country, told the subcommittee that funding is critical. "What's the alternative if this federal funding goes away?" asked Shaheen. "What do you see coming in to replace it and what do you think will happen in your state to address this epidemic?" "As a small nonprofit, I'm thinking bake sales," replied Pierce, saying there was no true alternative to federal funding. Navigating Recovery of the Lakes Region has created a program in which those in long-term recovery can serve as state certified recovery support workers to help those just beginning recovery. Shaheen helped boost the funding to fight the opioid crisis in New Hampshire to nearly $23 million a year in 2018 and 2019, up sevenfold compared to 2017.

By:  Monica Hernandez
Source: WMUR