Aroostook Mental Health Center (AMHC) has been awarded $2.5 million to support and expand their Medication Assisted Treatment services, Maine's Congressional delegation announced on Monday.

“For nearly six decades, Aroostook Mental Health Center has been committed to improving the health of rural and underserved communities,” stated Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Congressman Jared Golden in a news release.

“This funding will allow the dedicated staff at AMHC to continue to provide high-quality treatment and other support resources to individuals struggling with opioid addiction in Northern Maine. Last year. Maine lost 504 people to drug overdoses, and we’re on track to exceed that number this year – which is why these services are needed more than ever.”

The funding was awarded through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

“AMHC is excited to be awarded a SAMHSA grant to increase access to substance use treatment services,” said Ellen Bemis, CEO of AMHC.  “The purpose is to expand medication assisted treatment (MAT) in Aroostook, Washington and Hancock counties over the next five years. AMHC appreciates the level of support we continue to receive from our congressional delegation to help make these efforts possible in our rural service area.”

The funding follows a recent $1 million award AMHC received to combat the opioid epidemic in northern Maine through the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration’s  Rural Communities Opioid Response Program.

SAMHSA operates a 24/7, national helpline that people can call to find treatment referral resources for mental health or substance use disorders: 800-662-HELP (4357).

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