Federal $1 Million Grant Targets Opioid Epidemic in N. Mich.


The federal government recently announced a $1 million grant to help rural northern Michigan communities deal with the opioid epidemic.

The Michigan Center for Rural Health received the grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The funding will support the 32-member Northern Michigan Opioid Response Consortium that works across 16 northern Michigan counties to identify barriers in opioid use disorder prevention, treatment, recovery, and workforce.

Kalkaska Memorial Health Center, Munson Healthcare Cadillac Hospital, Munson Healthcare Grayling Hospital, and Munson Healthcare Otsego Memorial Hospital are part of the 32-member coalition.

“The Northern Michigan Opioid Response Consortium is an impressive group of stakeholders who are committed to ensuring that access to person-centered care for those with an opiate use disorder is readily available in this rural region of the state,” said John Barnas, Michigan Center for Rural Health executive director. “This funding will allow for a coordinated, strategic approach in addressing barriers to this care.”

Munson Healthcare Medical Director for Population Health James Whelan, M.D., said the grant is a great asset to ongoing efforts to help the region’s residents dealing with opioid use disorder.

“We are very grateful for the government’s efforts to help stem this crisis in northern Michigan,” he said. “The consortium is ready to put these funds to work for our patients.”

Munson Medical Center earlier this summer received a grant from the Michigan Opioid Partnership to develop a medication assisted treatment program in its Emergency Department. Click here to learn more about Opioid resources in northern Michigan.