DOH-Volusia Receives $500K Grant To Combat Drug Overdoses

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Daytona Beach, FL - The Florida Department of Health in Volusia County (DOH-Volusia) is one of ten recipients nationwide to receive an Implementing Overdose Prevention Strategies at the Local Level grant of $500,000 from the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO).  The agency will use the $500,000 grant to support activities that address the community’s challenges related to drug overdoses.

The 18-month project, which runs from January 2021 through July 2022 will focus on establishing linkages to care, enhancing partnerships with public safety and first responders, empowering individuals to make safer choices, and enhancing surveillance and data sharing.

A partnership with Volusia Recovery Alliance, SMA Healthcare, and the County of Volusia’s Department of Public Protection will be used to build a peer workforce, improve data connectivity, provide education, and reduce stigma.

“Ultimately this project aims to reduce the rate of repeat overdoses, reduce the stigma associated with substance use disorder and opioid use disorder, and increase the acceptance of a peer workforce prevention model,” said DOH-Volusia Administrator Patricia Boswell.  

A second grant from NACHO, in the amount of $50,000 will be used to conduct a retrospective evaluation of strategies that advance health equity and improve chronic disease conditions by addressing the social determinants of health. In partnership with Bethune-Cookman University’s Master of Public Health program and the Volusia County Tobacco Free Partnership, DOH-Volusia has elected to evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of implementing smoke-free policies in market-rate and senior housing. 

“This project will help us to identify improvements that will lead to a more streamlined process for implementing smoke-free policies in multi-unit housing,” Boswell added. “The end goal is a decrease in adverse health outcomes associated with tobacco use experienced by older adults and low-income adults in Volusia County.”

Both of these projects closely align with the Volusia County Community Health Improvement Plan’s goal to Improve adult behavioral health outcomes.  The 2020-2022 plan is online at VolusiaHealth.com/planning.

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