MAHEC Awarded $1.8M to Expand Addiction Treatment Services Across WNC

July 21, 2020

Asheville, NC (July 20, 2020)— The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) $1.8 million over five years to increase the number of addiction specialists trained in primary care settings.

HRSA awarded a total of $20.3 million to MAHEC and 43 other fellowship programs across the country to expand the addiction workforce in communities with the greatest need like Western North Carolina, where all 18 counties are designated as mental health professional shortage areas. WNC has higher rates of substance use, overdose, suicide, and depression than state and national averages.

“This grant will help us expand treatment services in rural communities where individuals may not have reliable transportation, insurance, or access to a provider who is trained in addiction care,” Carriedelle Fusco explains. Fusco is a family nurse practitioner at MAHEC who instructs addiction medicine fellows and uses evidence-based practices to treat patients with opioid and other substance use disorders.

The program, housed in MAHEC’s Department of Family Medicine, welcomed its first three physician fellows this summer.

Read the full press release here.

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