The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), Bureau for Public Health’s Office of Emergency Medical Services announced Clay County and the Morgan County Rescue Service have been awarded federal funding to provide comprehensive emergency personnel training supporting mental health and substance use response.
Clay County received a $136,166 grant for the Clay County Ambulance Service to provide training for emergency medical services (EMS) providers on mental health and substance use disorders. It will also allow for the purchase of personal protective equipment.
Morgan County Rescue Service received $200,000 for its Rural Recruitment Retention and Training Initiative, a comprehensive training and emergency personnel training recruitment program. The initiative focuses on recruiting and training new and existing EMS personnel, law enforcement, and volunteer firefighters, as well as addressing mental health and substance use response efforts.
“These grants will help these local EMS agencies to not only train their personnel on critical issues such as mental health and substance use disorders, but it will help them enhance their workforce, thus improving their overall response for the residents they serve,” said Jody Ratliff, Director of DHHR’s Office of Emergency Medical Services, which oversees the emergency care system in West Virginia.
The grants were awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).