Fond du Lac, Dodge counties awarded over $600,000 grant to combat opioids

Sarah Razner, Fond du Lac Reporter Published 6:21 a.m. CT Sept. 17, 2018 | Updated 6:21 a.m. CT Sept. 17, 2018

A study says the number of deadly heroin overdoses in the country more than quadrupled from 2010 to 2015. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, there were almost 13,000 overdose deaths involving heroin in 2015, compared to more than 3,000 deaths fatalities five years earlier. The center's research was based on death certificate data and did not examine whether overdoses were intentional suicides or accidental deaths. Heroin has been becoming more potent and cheaper to buy, which may be causing more people to use it, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Through a $666,000 grant provided by the state, Dodge and Fond du Lac counties are partnering to increase availability and immediacy of treatment for those suffering from opioid use disorder.

When the state opened the Wisconsin Opioid and Methamphetamine Treatment Centers Grant application process last year, it was restricted to counties considered high need, including Dodge County.

In 2016, 26 people died from drug overdose deaths in Dodge County, up from 22 the year before, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ WISH Query. However, with a focus to help regionally, Dodge County needed to partner with another county, doing so with Fond du Lac County, said Dodge County Director of Human Services and Health Becky Bell.

While Fond du Lac County is not considered high need, like Dodge County, the opioid problem is considered “significant,” said Fond du Lac County Department of Community Programs AODA Coordinator Lynn Klapperich.

In 2016, Fond du Lac County had 14 drug overdose deaths.  

A person-focused program

Working together, Bell and Klapperich applied for the grant, learning months later that the counties received over $600,000 to fund treatment. Based “upon outcomes and success of the program,” it is possible the counties will receive additional funding for four more years, said Bell.

In April, the counties contracted with Justice Point, an organization out of Milwaukee, which works with multiple counties in the state, as well as in Minnesota to assist in pretrial diversion, impaired driving court and adult drug court said Adayta Axelson, program director of Opioid Treatment Center of Dodge and Fond du Lac County 

In Dodge and Fond du Lac counties, Axelson reached out to community support services, such as law enforcement, hospitals, EMS services and social services to spread the word about the treatment center.

“We had a great response, from law enforcement especially,” she said. “They’re really on the front lines and see it a lot.”

Individuals, family members and these community support services can refer someone to the program through filling out brief online referral forms on the Dodge and Fond du Lac county websites, as well as on the Opioid Treatment Center’s website. Those interested can also call 920-386-4851.  

Of particular focus are pregnant women suffering from opioid use disorder and helping them reach services and prevent “any further damage to the child,” said Klapperich. Those outside of the counties are also able to take part in the program.

Once referred, the center will respond within 48 hours.

Through Justice Point, cases are managed and an intake specialist conducts assessments to determine the level of care needed, and have the person placed correctly, be it in residential treatment, detox, an intensive outpatient program, group therapy, family treatment program and more.

With the assessment is completed, treatment begins. The immediacy is important, as it lessens time for people to relapse, overdose or change their mind.

“People don’t have to wait for treatment. They don’t have to make an appointment and wait several weeks to see someone,” said Klapperich.

Axelson added, “We don’t want to create a barrier for them to get into the program or get help.”

The grant allowed for another gap to be filled in the process: that of a recovery support specialist. Through this, those in the program can receive assistance in finding housing, employment, transportation and behavioral health services, said Bell, addressing other areas of life affected by opioids. If without transport, staff will drive the participants to treatment, or go to their homes.

“It’s a very person-centered approach,” said Axelson. “We’re not saying we have all the answers, but we’re really looking for the solution for the person individually.”

Treatment is provided at the Dodge County Human and Health Services, and Fond du Lac County Department of Community programs. In addition, the grant allowed for increased availability in detox services and money for residential treatment, said Klapperich.

Through the grant, typically expensive residential treatment is paid for, and allows the counties to send those in need to treatment centers which they have contracts with, including — but not limited to — Blandine House, Beacon House and Mahala’s Hope, as well as Nova in Oshkosh and Genesis in Milwaukee.

Launching in August, the program currently has 20 clients, but has had 46 referrals. There are nine pending referrals, according to Axelson.

Invite to resources

With a wide variety of resources now available at the community’s finger tips, those involved urge people to reach out.

“I would encourage anybody who is a family member, or if they are struggling with an opioid disorder to reach out and access our services,” Bell said.

Do you or someone you know need assistance for opioid use disorder?

Visit fdlco.wi.gov or co.dodge.wi.gov and search "Opioid Treatment Center," or otcwisconsin.com

Call: 920-386-4851

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Opioid treatment center opens in Dodge County

The treatment center for the Dodge County Human Services and Health and Fond du Lac County’s Department of Community Programs began offering help to people suffering from opioid use on Monday. Anyone searching for help with opioid addiction can call 920-386-4851.

JUNEAU — A treatment center for Dodge County Human Services and Health and Fond du Lac County’s Department of Community Programs on Monday began offering help to people suffering from opioid use.

“It’s a great opportunity for the community,” said program director Adayta Axelson, from Justice Point, the opioid treatment center of Dodge and Fond du Lac counties.

The program was set up with the help of $666,667 from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The partnership of the health and human services departments in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties will provide treatment for opioid addiction in Adams, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Juneau, Manitowoc and Marquette counties. However the services are available to any Wisconsin resident

The counties are contracting with Justice Point, a nonprofit organization from Milwaukee County that promotes evidence-informed criminal justice programs, practices and policies.

Dodge County Human Services and Health Department Director Becky Bell — who previously worked in Fond du Lac County — said Justice Point is already used in Dodge County. The program funded by the DHS will be housed out of Dodge County Human Services, but will travel to Fond du Lac as well.

Axelson said the program offers treatment from start to finish. People wanting to use the program can call 920-386-4851. An intake specialist will perform an exam to determine the level of services that is needed for them.

In Dodge County, Axelson said most of the services will be offered at the Dodge County Health and Human Services area of the Henry Dodge Building in Juneau.

Bell said those entering the program do not have to have insurance.

The only services that would require people to go outside of the county for services are detox services and residential treatment, Bell said.

Dodge County services include outpatient substance abuse groups; day treatment; intensive outpatient; family education; intoxicated driver program assessment; psychiatric evaluation and medication; metal health individual and group counseling; and a 24-hour crisis services.

Fond du Lac County services include outpatient substance abuse treatment; intensive outpatient substance abuse treatment; acute hospitalization; residential treatment; relapse prevention; aftercare treatment; family program treatment; and specific aftercare for women.

“Treatment can start in two days,” Axelson said. “Detox services begin right away.”

“Justice Point does individualized service plans not just for treatment but for things like housing, employment, relationships and transportation,” Bell said.

“If someone is struggling with addiction and has no place to live, there is a higher chance that they will not abstain from substances.”

Dodge County and Fond du Lac counties both offer a safe access point for referrals and treatment. Bell said many law enforcement officers hand out cards with information about the treatment on it for those in need of help with opioid addiction.

Bell said if they are successful, there is an opportunity for an additional four years of funding.

Justice Point is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. but there are crisis lines in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties. Dodge County has a non-business hours crisis line at 888-552-6642 and weekday crisis and treatment intake line at 386-4094. Fond du Lac County has a crisis line at 920-929-3535 and treatment intake line at 920-929-3565.

Axelson said they began with a soft start in July and already has five clients and 17 referrals.

“If you are struggling,” Axelson said. “Reach out, there are treatment services available to help get people into recovery.”

For more information visit otcwisconsin.com.

Anyone who needs help or needs information about helping someone with an addiction can contact an intake worker by calling 920-386-4094. Those in crisis may ask to speak to a crisis worker. However, when crisis workers are not available, law enforcement should be contacted to receive help fast.

https://www.wiscnews.com/bdc/news/local/opioid-treatment-center-opens-in-dodge-county/article_a76d6b7d-ec70-57c3-af5a-f9b86e075977.html

 

Dodge and Fond du Lac counties join together on grant to fight opioid addiction

JUNEAU — The Dodge County Human Services and Health Department has joined together with the Fond du Lac County’s Department of Community Programs to receive $666,667 to fund an regional opioid treatment center.

“I’m super excited,” Dodge County Human Services and Health Department director Becky Bell said. “I’m over the moon.”

The Wisconsin Department of Health Series awarded thee grants. The partnership of the health and human services departments in Dodge and Fond du Lac counties will provide treatment for opioid addiction in Adams, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Juneau, Manitowoc and Marquette counties.

The two counties submitted the joint proposal because of how the grant was structured. Bell worked in Fond du Lac County before coming to Dodge County.

“I have some ties to Fond du Lac, and we have had some conversations on joining forces,” Bell said. “The grant required a regional approach with more than one county applying.”

Dodge County is designated a high-priority area because of the high number of deaths in Dodge County. The number of deaths from drug overdoses rose from 14 in 2014 to at least 26 in 2016. Dodge County Medical Examiner P.J. Schoebel said final numbers for 2017 are not completed yet. However, it appears at least 20 people in Dodge County died from drug overdoses last year.

Bell said that they have not received a final contract yet, but they have been told they could receive the funding on April 1.

The grant includes contracting with Justice Point, a nonprofit organization from Milwaukee County that promotes evidence-informed criminal justice programs, practices and policies.

Bell said Justice Point is already used in Dodge County. For this grant, the program will be housed out of Dodge County Human Services, but will travel to Fond du Lac as well.

 

The AODA counselors in the counties cannot provide all the resources that addicts need sometime, Bell said. Justice Point will step in and help with things like housing, employment and transportation.

“To try to treat addiction while you are homeless impedes recovery,” Bell said. “We want to meet all their needs and set up the best success outcomes possible. In order to do that, we have to look at the environmental factors.”

The grant will also fund residential treatment, detoxification services, medication treatments and even financing transportation for treatments.

Bell said if they are successful, there is an opportunity for an additional four years of funding.

Dodge County Human Services already provides confidential help to those fighting substance abuse, from outpatient day treatments to residential treatment for those needing additional services including detoxification services.

To access help through the county, a person does not need insurance, Bell said.

Dodge County Human Services does not report drug use to law enforcement, Bell said.

Anyone who needs help or needs information about helping someone with an addiction can contact an intake worker by calling 920-386-4094. Those in crisis may ask to speak to a crisis worker. However, when crisis workers are not available, law enforcement should be contacted to receive help fast.

http://www.wiscnews.com/bdc/news/local/dodge-and-fond-du-lac-counties-join-together-on-grant/article_485c0b73-d204-5eda-abb8-6a6c3f882039.html

JOINT GRANT AWARDED TO DODGE AND FOND DU LAC COUNTY TO COMBAT OPIOID CRISIS

(Juneau) Officials from Dodge and Fond du Lac County recently found out their joint proposal for a regional opioid treatment grant was chosen for funding. Over $666-thousand dollars will be awarded from the state and is currently slated to start on April 1st. Dodge County Health and Human Services Director Rebecca Bell says the region was identified as a high needs area due to the high number of opioid related deaths. The grant’s purpose is to serve as a joint effort between both counties to meet the needs of individuals on a regional basis who are struggling with opioid addiction. Bell says two or more counties were needed to join forces as a part of the requirements to submit a proposal. She says she used to work in Fond du Lac County and reached out to an old-coworker to discuss the best way to proceed. Bell says within the grant proposal there is money set aside for residential care and treatment, medication assisted treatment, medically monitored detox services, as well as transportation services. The proposal also includes a subcontract with a Milwaukee based non-profit called Justice Point. Bell says the agency will serve as a first point of contact. She says they will be responsible for enrolling individuals into the program and providing intensive case management services to ensure the success of the individual. As well as assist individuals with employment, housing, transportation to treatment services, and providing extensive support to those seeking recovery services. Bell says Dodge County currently works with the group on their Treatment Alternatives and Diversion program. She says because the grant takes a regional approach, individuals in other counties that have been identified as high risk such as Marquette, Adams, Juneau, and Manitowoc would also be able to receive services from the grant. After the contract is reviewed and signed, a resolution will be presented to the County Board for approval. Bell says anyone struggling with opioid abuse should reach out to her department to seek help. The phone number for the Dodge County Health and Human Services Department is 920-386-3500.
http://dailydodge.com/joint-grant-awarded-dodge-fond-du-lac-county-combat-opioid-crisis/