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Rhode Island awarded federal funding for addiction treatment

September 29, 2019 GMT

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island has been awarded nearly $3.5 million in federal funding for addiction treatment.

The state’s congressional delegation announced the grant from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. It’s meant to increase the treatment capacity of Medicaid providers for substance use disorder treatment and recovery services.

U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, a Rhode Island Democrat, says the funding will help ensure services are there when needed. Whitehouse, who wrote a 2016 law to guide the federal response to the opioid epidemic, says no patient who wants help should be turned away.

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Behavioral health providers will receive telemedicine services and technical assistance in billing and administration. The grant will also allow Rhode Island to recruit and train new providers.

There were 314 overdose deaths in Rhode Island in 2018.