Emmons: USDA grant will aid Sheridan Community Hospital in opioid fight

Sen. Judy Emmons

Sen. Judy Emmons

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Judy Emmons is applauding a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announcement that Sheridan Community Hospital has been awarded a $284,105 grant to combat opioid abuse in rural areas.

According to the USDA, the grant will help the hospital develop a telemedicine system to address opioid misuse through the delivery of professional medical primary care and behavioral-health medical services over new, high definition, two-way interactive technology.

“Telemedicine is a breakthrough in health care, leveraging modern technology and connectivity to serve more patients in more ways,” said Emmons, R-Sheridan. “As we work to combat and overcome the epidemic of opioid abuse, particularly in rural areas, this grant will provide welcome resources and critical professional development opportunities that I am confident will have a lasting positive impact in our communities.”

The department said primary medical care will also be provided to four sites across Montcalm County over the course of the project timeline. Additionally, the project will provide professional development opportunities for medical and social service professionals at the four sites.

The project is expected to reach an estimated 3,704 county residents.

The project is one of 128 projects nationwide receiving a total of $37 million through the USDA Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant Program, designed to increase access to job training and educational and health care services in rural areas.

For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.