The Texas, Douglas, Ozark and Wright County health Departments are partnering to bring about behavioral health system changes. 

In the past several months, each health department met with its opioid task force committee members to identify resources, gaps and barriers to behavioral health needs encompassing substance use and opioid misuse.

Following a collaborative agreement application, the Douglas County Health Department was awarded grant funding from the Missouri Foundation for Health (MFH) for behavioral health systems programs in the four counties utilizing an ongoing partnership.

Texas, Douglas, Ozark and Wright county health departments will work together to hire two navigators to help individuals find and obtain needed resources, identify and pay for transportation costs for individuals in recovery, develop and implement Crisis Intervention Teams (CIT), develop media messaging to increase awareness of the opioid problems and reduce the stigma and identify evidence-based curricula to be utilized in schools and faith-based organizations to teach youth coping and life skills.

“This behavioral health system change program follows along perfectly to help address some of the gaps identified by taskforce members,” said Valerie Reese, Douglas County Health Department administrator. 

The program is set in three phases over the course of three years. The first year will be the initial phase, the second year will be implementation and the third year will be maintenance. 

For more information, call the Douglas County Health Department at 417-683-4174.

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