A University of Alabama-led research team received $1 million from the Health Resources and Services Administration to create an opioid prevention and treatment network in West Alabama. The grant comes following UA's research into the state's opioid crisis and rehabilitation services.

The Greater Rural Opioid Wellness in Alabama Project aims to aid areas in the state that are at a higher risk of opioid-related deaths, said the UA research team in a press release. The HRSA has identified Franklin, Marion, Winston, Lamar, and Fayette Counties as "high-risk."

GROW Alabama's approval comes during the COVID-19 pandemic when opioid-related emergency room visits statewide have increased by 81% since January according to Dr. Matthew Hudnall, associate director of the Institute of Business Analytics at UA and co-principal investigator for GROW Alabama.

The UA multidisciplinary team with partner with with health and education community organizations in the five counties and use the new prevention and treatment network to combat the opioid crisis.

The University's Dr. Hee Yun Lee and her team will work with a variety of community leaders across West Alabama including CEOs of community agencies and clinics.

Visit UA's news webpage for more details and the full press statement.

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