Ventura Medi-Cal Program Plunges Money Into Tackling Opioid Addiction
Money from the Alternative Resources for Community Health program will go toward providing naloxone kits to those in need.
Ventura County Star:
Medi-Cal Plan’s Funding Effort Targets The Homeless, Shut-Ins, Opioid Abusers
The Gold Coast Health Plan, launched five years ago, provides Medi-Cal insurance to more than 200,000 low-income Ventura County residents. Once immersed in red, the publicly-funded plan has built reserves that allow it to spend about two cents from every dollar of revenue on a new program called Alternative Resources for Community Health. That adds up to $12.1 million. The spending program orbits around finding different ways to help people's health. One involves tackling addiction. About $51,000 of ARCH's $12.1 million budget will be spent on kits that include nasal spray or syringes of the medication naloxone. It is used to help people breathe and reverse potentially fatal overdoses caused by opioids ranging from heroin to painkillers like Percocet. Ventura County Behavioral Health Department leaders say their pilot program involving naloxone has brought proof of 32 overdoses that were reversed. They say the money from ARCH will bring 1,000 more naloxone kits. (Kisken, 6/15)