McAuliffe vows $76M to fight opioids, improve mental health treatment

McAuliffe vows $76M to fight opioids, improve mental health treatment

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced Monday that his 2019-2020 budget includes $76 million to combat the opioid epidemic and improve behavioral health treatment.

"During my term as governor, our team has worked hard to make Virginia a leader in fighting the opioid epidemic that is raging in communities across Virginia and the entire country," he said in a press release. "I have also worked to bring our behavioral health services into the 21st century by investing in more community-based services, while still recognizing the need for bed space in state facilities. Addiction and mental illness are diseases, not moral failings."

The breakdown of the budget proposal for opioids:

  • Replace grant funds for medication-assisted treatment with general funds: $10 million

  • Support Permanent Supportive Housing for pregnant women with substance abuse disorder:  $2.5 million

  • Provide funding to expand drug courts: $800,000

  • Establish residential opioid treatment programs for offenders: $877,872

  • Increase probation and parole officers: $2.3 million

  • Six additional controlled substances forensic scientist positions and overtime funding for existing scientists: $1.3 million

  • Provide nongeneral funds and two positions for drug court evaluation and monitoring: $350,642

The breakdown for mental health totals $57.8 million:

  • Expand supportive housing for adults with serious mental illness: $4.6 million

  • Support needed community services as a result of mental health facility census: $4.8 million

  • Provides funds to implement Primary Care Screening services: $11.2 million

  • Provides funds to implement same-day access at Community Service Boards: $11.8 million

  • Complete Implementation of Same Day Access-STEP VA (DMAS): $6.4 million

  • Funding for DAP for approximately 80-90 individuals: $6.9 million

  • Funds the costs of positions and the needed non-personnel resources: $5.6 million

  • Provides funds to Catawba and Piedmont Geriatric hospitals to offset the loss of Medicaid Disproportionate Share payments: $2.2 million

  • Establish specialized programs for counseling veterans: $447,900

  • Expand mental health court dockets: $1 million

  • Funds programs and additional personnel to treat seriously mentally ill offenders in secure setting: $2.9 million

Copyright 2017 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.