Alaska getting more than $10M to fight opioid problem

September 19, 2018

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials say Alaska is receiving more than $10 million to help fight its opioid problem.

The $10.4 million announced Wednesday is among more than $1 billion distributed to states by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

For Alaska, about $4 million will go toward medication-based treatments. Nearly $6.4 million will go toward community health centers, rural organizations and academic institutions for increased access to services.

In Alaska, overdose deaths involving the synthetic opioid fentanyl and related synthetic opioids more than quadrupled last year — from eight deaths in 2016 to 37 in 2017.

Authorities say that given the state’s small population — estimated at just under 740,000 last year — Alaska also has had one of the nation’s highest per-capita death rates for prescription opioid overdoses since 2012.

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