U.S. Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton along with U.S. Representatives Rick Crawford, French Hill, Steve Womack and Bruce Westerman announced last week Arkansas is the recipient of nearly $3 million for Community Health Centers to advance substance abuse and mental health treatment.

The funds are awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through its Expanding Access to Quality Substance Use Disorder and Mental Health Services program.

Facilities in the following Arkansas communities are recipients of funding include $285,000 to the River Valley Primary Care Services in Ratcliff.

“Community Health Centers have long been on the frontlines of the opioid epidemic. Throughout this escalating crisis, they have played a vital role in addressing the mental and behavioral health needs of those seeking treatment, no matter the circumstances. In spite of the growing number of patients with opioid use disorder, they have expanded services to meet the needs of the communities they serve. Their efforts to implement effective treatment, recovery and prevention methods are critical in addressing this crisis. This funding will support the implementation of care that will help turn the tide of opioid epidemic,” Boozman said.

“Improving access to treatment and recovery services must be a component in our strategy to defeat opioid addiction in Arkansas. This welcome funding will allow our Community Health Centers to continue administering critical treatment for substance abuse and often-associated mental health problems,” Cotton said.

“Opioid addiction is a nationwide crisis that knows no geographic or demographic boundary. Addiction treatment is often difficult to access and administer in rural America due to lack of infrastructure and funding. Our Community Health Centers serve some of our most vulnerable populations and this critical grant will bolster and expand the work they are already doing to battle this epidemic,” Crawford said.

“Across Arkansas, tearful families have told me their stories about how the opioid crisis has personally affected them, which is why I’m especially pleased to hear that our Arkansas Community Health Centers will receive more funds to combat this epidemic. We can’t let another Arkansas family be devastated by this crisis, and with legislation and community-wide effort, we can help fight this tragedy hurting the ones we love,” Hill said.

“The opioid abuse epidemic knows no boundaries. This deadly crisis requires aggressive action on all fronts, and these grants will support those struggling with addiction to find recovery. By equipping our local, on-the-ground experts with the resources they need to implement treatment and rehabilitation a, we will help save lives and end this scourge,” Womack said.

“Access to treatment and recovery is vital in our fight against the opioid epidemic in the Natural State. These grants to Community Health Centers across Arkansas help meet the needs of patients in all corners of the state, saving lives and giving those suffering with addiction hope for a brighter future,” Westerman said.