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Western Michigan University awarded grant to help fight opioid abuse

Flickr USer Dean Schreuder

Four Michigan counties at the front of the opioid drug crisis will be getting help from Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. 

It’s won a 1.4 million dollar federal grant for the “MY-PROUD” project. It focuses on preventing and treating overdoses and deaths among young people. Associate Western professor of social work Jennifer Harrison says it will send graduate students to help hospitals and schools:

"And then, ultimately, we're hoping to be able to impact and help be one of a number of services that helps bring down that opioid death rate. I mean, I think that's ultimately what a lot of these programs addressing opioids are really trying to do is just get ahead of the unacceptable rate of people dying related to opioid use disorders."

The “MY-PROUD” project will work in Calhoun, Van Buren, Muskegon, and Jackson counties. Harrison says they have the highest overdose and death rates involving fentanyl, heroin, and other opioid drugs.