Current Initiatives of Substance Abuse Treatment Services

Alabama Covid-19 Response Unit (ACRU)
This grant is statewide, placing specific emphasis on counties hardest hit. ACRU will employ evidence-based practices to treat individuals in Alabama impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The interdisciplinary team will provide service to both urban and rural patients using multiple platforms including in-person and telehealth technologies. With this funding, we will be able to develop and implement approaches and strategies to assess and treat healthcare professionals, and individuals with serious mental illness, substance abuse, and COVID 19 related trauma. Treatment services will include FDA-approved medications to treat SMI or SUD including opioid use disorder, medication management, outpatient, intensive outpatient treatment, and mental health crisis services. Alabama recognizes that these vulnerable populations are at heightened risk of psychological distress and intervening to protect both mental and physical health is an important component of public health measures for addressing the COVID-19 epidemic and supporting these vulnerable populations. Project ACRU will serve 500 people in 16 months. This is a SAMHSA-funded grant.

Alabama Rural Counties Drug Court Treatment Expansion Project
This grant will expand treatment services for non-violent, criminal offenders with substance use disorders and/or co-occurring substance use disorders and mental health illnesses who are enrolled in drug courts in five rural Alabama counties: Dallas, Wilcox, Butler, Crenshaw, and Lowndes. The current capacity of the selected courts is 45 people. The project will expand services to an additional  60 people, allowing the courts to see 105 people annually and 525 over the five-year grant period. The grant goals include: 1) increasing the capacity the selected courts to provide treatment for substance use disorders and/or co-occurring mental health disorders: and 2) decreasing the gaps in the continuum of treatment to individuals with substance use disorders and/or co­ occurring mental illnesses. This is a SAMHSA-funded grant.

Medication-Assisted Treatment-Prescription Drug and Opioid Addiction (MAT-PDOA) and
State Opioid Response 2 (SOR2)
Federally funded grants aimed at reducing the opioid overdose and opioid death rates in Alabama. MAT-PDOA specifically provides funding for services in two counties, Jefferson, and Walker. These two counties were identified as having the highest opioid overdose and overdose death rate in the state. SOR2 covers the entire state of Alabama and includes individuals with a Stimulant Use Disorder (SUD). Both grants provide MAT with FDA-approved medications and clinical services using evidence-based curriculum to individuals diagnosed with an Opioid Use Disorder (OUD). Individuals diagnosed with a SUD are provided with clinical services, case management, and peer services. SOR2 also provided Narcan to first responders and community members. Both grants are funded through the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Project FREEDOM (First Responder Expansion of Education and Distribution of Overdose Medication)
This grant is a targeted initiative that focuses on reducing opioid overdose deaths in rural Alabama through training local EMS workers and municipality and volunteer fire personnel on Narcan administration, increasing the supply of Narcan to certified personnel, referring overdose survivors to treatment and support services, and a media campaign on the Good Samaritan Law. The counties targeted in this grant are Blount, Cullman, Etowah, Fayette, Franklin, Jackson, Lawrence, Marion, Marshall, Morgan, St. Clair, Shelby Walker, and Winston. The unduplicated training count will be a total of 4000 first responders over the four-year project period. This is a SAMHSA-funded grant.

Recovery Housing Initiative
The ADMH Housing Initiative for individuals with a substance use disorder began as a result of the opioid crisis. It was initially designed specifically for people who were receiving Medications for an Opioid Use Disorder (MOUD) in combination with treatment services, traditionally called MAT (Medication Assisted Treatment). Due to the current pandemic, the initiative has since been expanded and individuals with any substance use disorder may receive housing services. Recovery houses apply and are approved through ADMH to provide such services. In addition, ADMH has created an emergency housing initiative. ADMH approved recovery houses may receive emergency housing funds for those individuals who are unable to engage in a program of recovery while they are waiting on residential placement because their living environment is not safe nor conducive to recovery.

ROAD (Reducing Opioid Addiction through Diversion)
This grant allows ADMH to plan and implement diversion programs for those individuals who find themselves at the crossroads of the criminal justice system and needing substance use treatment services. As a result of this grant, ADMH has partnered with the Recovery Organization of Support Specialists (R.O.S.S.) to offer mobile services such as assessments, transportation to and from treatment, and recovery support services for individuals in the targeted areas. This program is available for any individual in Montgomery (and surrounding counties), Etowah, Jefferson, and Walker Counties with involvement with the criminal justice system. This grant is funded through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA).

Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT)
ADMH works with VitAL at the University of Alabama, School of Social Work regarding the AL-SBIRT grant that is executed across a wide range of primary care clinics and hospitals to train and implement Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT). SBIRT is used to identify and intervene with individuals who have a substance use disorder and those who are considered to be at risk for developing these disorders. For more information visit

Nicole Walden, Director