County will continue participation in chemical dependency healthcare pilot project

Washington County will continue to participate in a state chemical dependency healthcare project, after the County Board approved its continuance Aug. 4.

After legislative changes in 2010, the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) implemented Chemical Health Care Home Pilot Services with Washington County and other counties.

The pilot program authorizes the use of Consolidated Chemical Dependency Treatment Funds (CCDTF) to pay for additional, non-traditional chemical health services as an alternative to treatment. The primary service component that the county provides under this agreement is a “navigator” (i.e., case manager) to assist with and advocate for housing support, rental assistance, peer support, family engagement, independent living skills, and vocational support. The county submits the cost of these services on a monthly basis to DHS for reimbursement.

Participants must have no less than two or more treatment episodes in the past two years, among other conditions, and voluntarily agree to participate in the pilot project.

Since Washington County started participating in the pilot, there has been an increase in housing stability, employment, and sobriety for program clients. There is also a decrease in the rate of detoxification services used. In addition, many of these individuals needed access to medical care related to serious medical conditions that were untreated.

There are eligibility requirements for the program and these limit the number of clients, and, therefore, how much Washington County is able to bill each month. Washington County averages about $6,000 in services for the program each month.

 

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