HHSC Continues Efforts to Address the Opioid Crisis


Texas Health and Human Services Commission

Cecile Erwin Young
HHS Executive Commissioner

September 24, 2020

Kelli Weldon, 512-424-6951

Texas Awarded Two-Year, $104 Million Federal Grant

AUSTIN – The Texas Health and Human Services Commission has secured a two-year, $104 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to help people and families negatively impacted by opioids.

“We are saving lives with the support of these federal funds that allow us more training and treatment services for people affected by the opioid crisis in Texas,” said Sonja Gaines, HHS deputy executive commissioner for Intellectual and Developmental Disability and Behavioral Health Services. “We’re working closely with agencies throughout Texas to increase prevention awareness and help people all over the state who have opioid use disorder or know someone with opioid use disorder.”

The $104 million State Opioid Response 2020 grant will increase access to medication-assisted treatment and reduce opioid overdose-related deaths through prevention and recovery activities. Expanding access to evidence-based medication-assisted treatment helps people by combining Food and Drug Administration-approved medications with counseling and behavioral therapies for a “whole-patient” approach to the treatment of opioid use disorders.

"I am proud of the ongoing efforts of the Legislature and HHSC to end the opioid crisis in Texas," said State Sen. Charles Schwertner, M.D. "As we continue to see the detrimental effects of opioid misuse on individuals and their families, it has become increasingly important to bolster our state's treatment and prevention options. I am thrilled to see this great work continue and grow so we are able to provide Texans with the support and resources they need.”

Since May 2017, Texas has been awarded more than $280.8 million in federal funding to fight the opioid crisis under the Texas Targeted Opioid Response (TTOR) program that includes State Opioid Response 2020 funding. To date, more than 600,000 people have received prevention, treatment or recovery support services through the TTOR program, including treatment, peer coaching services, disposal of prescription drugs, and overdose-related emergency response services.

Additionally, between May 2019 and June 2020, 110,816 naloxone kits have been disseminated and 1,624 people were trained to reverse an opioid overdose resulting in 1,417 lives saved through overdose reversals. People who benefit from TTOR services include people with opioid use disorder, their family members, significant others and supportive allies who are affected by opioid use.

More details, including information about individual projects and recipients, will be finalized in the coming weeks.

For more information on Texas’ opioid response efforts, visit the HHS website.