Health Care Agency receives $175,000 federal grant to increase access to substance abuse and mental health services

VENTURA, Calif. – Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-Westlake Village) has announced federal grant funding for two Ventura County health centers to increase access to substance abuse and mental health services.

“We must continue to do more to address the drug abuse and mental health issues afflicting too many individuals in our communities,” said Congresswoman Brownley. “That is why I am pleased to see additional funding go to two Ventura County health centers that will help expand their reach and improve access to care for those who are in need.”

The Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has awarded $175,700 to the Ventura County Health Care Agency and $175,701 to Clinicas Del Camino Real, Inc. as part of the Access Increases in Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services program. According to HRSA, AIMS funding supports the expansion of access to mental health services, and substance abuse services focusing on the treatment, prevention, and awareness of opioid abuse.

“We are pleased to receive these funds to support our work to increase access to mental health and awareness for opioid abuse prevention,” said Dr. Theresa Cho, Medical Director for Quality, Performance Improvement, and Patient Safety at the Ventura County Health Care Agency’s Ambulatory Care Administration. “These funds will be used toward tablet devices that will use a standardized method for gathering information from patients regarding substance abuse risk. Based on this information, medical providers will be able to direct patients toward brief intervention or referral for treatment as needed.”

The agency will provide outreach for opioid abuse prevention and treatment. Funds will also support the purchase of naloxone for opioid overdose emergency response and a part-time licensed clinical social worker to facilitate 12-step treatment and individualized counseling.

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