Opioid Epidemic & Substance Abuse


Family playing on the beachNorth Carolina received more than $31 million to address the opioid crisis through the 21st Century Cures Act (State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants) in May 2017. The grant was used to increase access to prevention, treatment and recovery supports, reducing unmet treatment needs, and reducing opioid-related overdoses and deaths. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) awarded the grant to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). North Carolina received $15,586,724 in the first year. Eighty percent of those funds must target outreach, engagement, treatment and recovery services. The funds were divided among the seven LME/MCOs in North Carolina to meet these goals.

Trillium has a long history of documenting the under-served substance use disorder population. As early as 2005, Trillium’s legacy organizations experienced greater demand for intervention and treatment services than available funding could support. Many individuals may have not been able to obtain treatment due to a lack of funding.

Trillium made the choice to fund a long-term residential substance use treatment programs to address these gaps in services. Through a partnership with The Healing Place based out of Kentucky, Trillium selected a site in Wilmington to replicate their successful treatment programs. Money from Trillium’s reinvestment funds was designated to this The Healing Place site. Once the facility is built, it will address one of the largest gaps in the substance use disorder treatment continuum of care that exists today: long-term, residential, peer-run treatment. As are so many others, Trillium is concerned about the ongoing opioid epidemic evident across our catchment area. As a result of Trillium’s experience with serving this population and discussions with treatment providers, we believe the following steps are necessary to fight this epidemic:

  • a continuum of intervention points
  • anonymous assessments (both in-person with a clinician and online)
  • a variety of treatment services since one size does not fit all
  • follow-up care that can effectively intervene in an individual’s cycle of drug addiction

New Hanover County Creates
Opioid PSAS

Raising awareness of the local opioid epidemic and its impact on the entire community is the goal of a public service announcement created by New Hanover County’s Communications and Outreach Department.

Read more HERE

Examples of the varieties of treatment services include outpatient treatment, residential treatment facilities, and follow-up and wrap-around services utilizing peer recovery mentors. Trillium works with partners to share community education efforts to assist families and significant others to recognize signs of harmful prescription and opioid use along with available intervention and treatment resources in the Trillium network.

Trillium remains actively engaged in addressing these issues in our catchment area. To learn more about the steps we are taking, visit the links below:

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You can help keep fraud, waste, abuse, unethical, or illegal activity out of our workplace. If you are uncomfortable communicating a concern in person, report it anonymously by calling the toll-free hotline number, 1.855.659.7660, or report it online at EthicsPoint and follow the instructions on the screen