Residents of Indiana are struggling with two simultaneous crises. Addiction continues to ravage the state, and the statistics are horrifying, as we see more Hoosiers dying from drug addiction than from car crashes. The number of drug overdoses has nearly doubled between 2010 and 2017, while drug-induced mortality rates have followed the trend, quadrupling between 2010 and 2014.
So what exactly is the state of Indiana doing to help its residents combat the devastating effects of street drugs?
The State of Things Today
Fortunately, there is good news to report on the frontlines of recovery. 2019 saw a potentially lifesaving boost to the state’s addiction recovery services. Over the past few years, state officials, including Indiana’s governor, Eric Holcomb, stepped up to the plate to address addiction. In the ongoing battle against Indiana’s drug crisis, Holcomb introduced Next Level Recovery in partnership with Jim McClelland, the Indiana Executive Director for Drug Prevention, Treatment, and Enforcement.
In response to Governor Holcomb’s repeated calls to action, Senate Bill 33 was born. Senate Bill 33, authored by Republican State Senator Jim Merritt, passed unanimously in the House of Representatives in April 2019. This bill’s passage led to the establishment of the Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Center (CARC) Grant Program.
This bill is an effort to support Indiana’s communities, families, and individuals who are vulnerable to and struggling with substance abuse. CARC is Indiana’s answer to the question posed above: what is the state doing to help its residents?
Boots On The Ground
In October, McClelland announced a designation of funds to boost local recovery networks. The rollout was designed by Jim Merritt, the author of SB 33. The funds for the programming come courtesy of the CARC Grant Program and will be delivered in two installments over the next two years.
The grant funds, totaling $3 million, have been allocated to three regional partnerships and will launch and improve Indiana’s addiction services over the coming years. The first round of funding, $1.5 million in all, is split between Indiana’s three regions: Merrillville in the north, Indianapolis in the central state, and Lawrenceburg in the south.
Regional Indiana partners will offer various substance use care services, including assessments, inpatient, outpatient, medication-assisted treatment, peer support services, recovery residences, job training, workforce readiness services, and family support services.
These programs aim to fill in the gaps that addictions services are currently lacking. As the Next Level Recovery site states, substance abuse is a disease that an individual cannot fight alone. Support for addicted individuals goes beyond the help friends and family alone can provide. It now falls to the state to provide services and resources to assist those recovering in the community. This kind of structural support is critical for these individuals personally, as it helps them lead a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
More comprehensive addiction treatment networks are indeed critical; for the success of the individual, communities everywhere, and the state of Indiana.
If you or a loved one struggles with addiction in Indiana, you don’t have to go it alone. To learn more about the resources available to you, reach out today.