The Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut Tribal Opioid Response Project is based on foundational elements from the National Tribal Behavioral Health Agenda (NTBHA) and aims to serve 4,187 individuals. Priority areas of focus will be on preventing and reducing opioid use and related deaths, increasing access to treatment, support, and recovery for individuals with opioid/stimulant use and/or co-occurring mental health disorders, and improving the health of individuals with substance misuse and mental health disorders. It will use the evidence-based Positive Indian Parenting Curriculum that offers culturally specific training for Native parents. Evidence based treatment will include Honoring Children, Mending the Circle: Cultural Adaptation of Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) for children aged 3-7. The curriculum will be adapted for use with youth aged 8-15. Development of Walking the Trail of Wellness cultural prevention curriculum will be adapted based on the evidence-based curriculum Healing of the Canoe and Strengthening Youth Project (White Mountain Apache Tribe). The widely used Gathering of Native Americans (GONA) event will also be held.
The Mohegan Tribe is a sovereign, federally recognized Indian Tribe in Southeastern Connecticut (SECT), with a population of approximately 2,307 Tribal members and 723 family members, for a total population of 3,030. We have Tribal members in 32 states across the United States. Our Tribal Government employs 497 people. As of June 2021 CT is ranked as one of the top 10 states with the highest rates of prescription opioid and heroin related overdose deaths, and New London County had the highest drug overdose death rate in the state (54.3).
The project builds on previous strategic planning from the Prescription Opioid Misuse Project Report (2018-2020) and the Tribal Health Assessment (2015) and both of these reports form the foundation for the project. Increasing MAT services to Tribal members is the primary focus and will utilize in-house psychiatric APRNs. The workforce will be offered several opioid and stimulant misuse education, prevention, treatment, and cultural healing opportunities specifically designed for them. Evidence based substance misuse and co-occurring disorders education, prevention, and treatment opportunities will be provided during in-person/virtual activities, radio, podcast, newsletters, email blasts, and social media. The Mohegan Tribe utilizes an integrated treatment model that brings together traditional treatment with culturally-based Native American healing practices. The Tribe will utilize a hub and spoke model of treatment in conjunction with Yale-New Haven Clinic, located on the reservation. The project proposes to train YNHC staff on cultural competencies and historical trauma, as well as provide guidance on adopting and integrating CLAS standards into their practice. Evidence Based Treatment and assessment strategies will be utilized.