The District of Columbia's Opioid Response 2 (DCOR 2) initiative will focus on increasing access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT), reducing unmet treatment needs, and reducing opioid overdose-related deaths through the provision of prevention, treatment, and recovery support services (RSS) to individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD). Expanded services and supports will also be provided to individuals with stimulant use disorders (STUD). Through support from the first State Opioid Response (SOR) grant (DCOR 1), the District has increased access to MAT, including in the DC Jail, and has expanded the array of substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and RSS. The SOR 2 grant will continue many of these initiatives, but will increase entry points into the system of care (e.g., mobile screening and MAT in high need communities) and better coordinate care as individuals move through the system by supporting the development of a care management entity and care managers at the DC Jail. Care managers will guide individuals through assessment, stabilization, and a coordinated network of services and supports. Peer support specialists will be used throughout the continuum of care to foster engagement and service connection. Training, technical assistance, coaching, and consultation will be available to SUD providers/health care professionals to increase their ability to address client needs. In addition, the District will implement a coordinated approach at the community level by facilitating key stakeholders in each ward to work collaboratively around prevention, community outreach, and education initiatives.
The DCOR 2 initiative will be implemented in all eight Wards with particular focus on Wards 5, 7 and 8 (highest opioid fatalities). A revised LIVE.LONG.DC, the District of Columbia Strategic Plan to Reduce Opioid Use, Misuse, and Related Deaths will be a guide for accomplishing the work. The specific goals of the grant are to continue to implement the city-wide opioid strategic plan; ensure timely access to high-quality (consistent with the criteria of the American Society of Addiction Medicine), coordinated, co-occurring (substance use disorder and mental health) treatment and recovery-oriented system of care; educate District residents and key stakeholders on the risk of opioid use disorders and stimulant addiction and effective prevention and treatment strategies; engage helping professionals and organizations in the prevention, early intervention and treatment of substance use disorder treatment through workforce development; support the awareness and availability of, and access to, harm reduction services in the District of Columbia consistent with evolving best and promising practices; implement a shared vision between the justice and public health agencies to address the needs of individuals who come in contact with the criminal justice system; and prepare for program sustainability through evaluation, planning, and performance monitoring and training and implement a continuous quality improvement process. The DCOR 2 initiative will serve 2,000 unduplicated individuals over the life of the grant (1,000 in Year 1 and 1,000 in Year 2).