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Frequently Asked Questions

Questions can be submitted to
MATinCountyCJ@healthmanagement.com

Who would typically be on a county team?

Typical teams will have five to eight people who work with the issues of addiction treatment in jails and criminal justice systems. The program description outlines the mandatory and optional members.

Who decides who will be on the county team?

This should be a collaborative decision across the interested parties within a county.

Can all team members come from one department (i.e. Jail Health)?

There can be more than one representative from one department, so long as the mandatory entities are represented.  However, the goal of the program is to increase access to MAT in jail and across the criminal justice continuum, so it will be beneficial to counties to have representatives from as many entities in the continuum as possible.

To whom will the funds be awarded?

Grant funds will be awarded and disbursed to the lead agency identified in the proposal.  Decisions about how the funds are used should be made in collaboration with all the involved parties.

How will the decision about which counties get awards be decided?

DHCS holds the authority to decide project awards.  DHCS has funded this project to support up to 20 counties.  All counties that meet the application criteria of establishing an appropriate team and completing the project application will be considered eligible.

Can a county have more than one team?

Large counties with multiple jails or drug courts may wish to propose more than one team, or to have a central team with “subgroups” representing different jails, courts, etc. DHCS will consider creative proposals that meet the project objectives.  Depending on how many counties apply, multiple teams in a single county may receive a single award or an augmented award.

When will the counties be notified if they are receiving a grant?

Awards will be announced August 3, 2018.

Can counties change representatives and/or add new ones once the grant has been awarded?

If a county team needs to change its membership over the course of the project, it can propose the change to the project team for approval, so long as project requirements continue to be met.

What do you mean by "teams will begin at different points and not end at the same point"?

The goal of this project is to move counties forward in expanding access to all forms of MAT in jails and criminal justice settings.  Some counties may already be providing some form MAT and not others.  Other counties may be working on adding access to MAT to drug courts (and even have funded projects underway.)  Still others may have taken no organized steps toward these objectives.  All counties are equally eligible to apply for this project, even though they are beginning at different points.  Likewise, counties are expected to move forward toward project goals during the project, but because the starting points will differ across the counties, their progress and end points are not expected to be the same.

What happens if a county is unable to expand access to at least two forms of MAT once it has been awarded the grant?

DHCS respects local decisions and the need for county-based autonomy in treating addictions, but wishes county criminal justice systems to make decisions in light of a thorough understanding of best practices and emerging medical standards of care.  Participating counties will have had the chance to learn from one another to reduce barriers to using multiple forms of MAT.  There will not be penalties imposed based on county decisions.

Is there an end date for this grant? If so, what happens if counties do not use all of its grant money? Can counties request for an extension?

The project is scheduled end March 31, 2019.  However, if additional federal funds become available, the Learning Collaborative may be extended.  Decisions about unused funds will be considered during the course of the project.

How are the funds disbursed and at what points?

The $25,000 grant will be disbursed in two equal payments – one at the project start and the other mid-way through the project.  The second payment will be contingent on the county’s participation in the Learning Collaboratives and other activities.

How many hours of commitment are required of the teams?

In general, county teams should expect that the full team meets at least monthly in the county and also participates in monthly coaching calls.  The full team must also participate in the on-site Learning Collaboratives.  In addition, individuals and/or sub-committees will conduct project work on policies, procedures, and other local activities.  Team members should expect to spend an average of 7 – 8 hours a month on this project across its 9 months (including the Learning Collaborative sessions).  Team Champions should expect to spend an addition 3-5 hours per month coordinating activities and working with the project team.

Who from the teams will be required to purchase naloxone and from where?

Naloxone will be made available to counties that wish to purchase it through the state’s special pricing and with available project funds.  There are no requirements that a county use this mechanism.

How many units of naloxone can be purchased?

There will be minimum of $75,000 available for naloxone across all the awarded counties that wish to participate.  More details on this program element will be developed after awards are made.

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What is the desired result of this learning process?

The desired result is for all counties involved to move forward in their ability to offer at least two forms of MAT through their jails and their drug court. There is no requirement for counties to perform at a certain level. Everyone is starting at a different point.

Will the slides from the informational webinar be available for download?

Yes, they are on the website as is a recording of the webinar.

Are we able to use Sublocade (injectable Suboxone) as one of the medications available to patients?

Yes, we support the use of any FDA approved form of the medications. Please note that the goal is to use two forms of MAT, but counties can apply even if there you are not currently using any MAT but are interested in improving access to MAT in your county’s jail.

Will all team members need to attend the learning collaboratives?

Yes, with minimal exceptions.

We don't have a physician in our area that is certified to order MAT meds. We want to participate in this program, but if we don't have anyone that can order these meds, I'm wondering if we qualify?

You do not have to have a physician who can order MAT in the jail. We will discuss other options throughout the learning collaborative.

What are the criteria for prioritizing which applications will receive the award?

The award decisions will be made by DHCS. Criteria will include need, geography, readiness, compliance with application requirements, and other factors.

Application question: Can you clarify what is meant by a "therapeutic community" (Section 4, #9)?

Some counties have therapeutic community SUD treatment programs in their jail. This is a program where inmates are housed together in one unit for purposes of a recovery-based intervention. They are only eligible to participate in the program if they are on that unit. The program operates 24/7, and the participants take responsibility for the success of the program, along with the staff. There are only few of these in California jails.

If we haven't received the complete buy-in on a mandatory group by the deadline, can we proceed with the application?

Yes. The criteria for eligibility is fairly liberal. If a county group has four out of the five participants, and one that has not confirmed their interest yet, just include that information on your application. It would be preferable in those cases that there are at least 5 confirmed team members, but one of these can be from the group of suggested, rather than mandatory participants.

If a county does not provide group treatment right now, but is planning on starting, how should they indicate that on their application?

Applicants can include a note stating this is something they will be starting, and the planned date for starting. Remember, the information about your jail and court current activities is not scored but is for informational purposes only.

Is the August 14 date for the first Learning Collaborative set in stone?

Yes, that date is already set and confirmed.

Will there be ongoing financial support to pay for medication within the jail and drug court to meet the needs of those in MAT? Can the funds be used for something other than what is written in the program description on the website?

This grant is limited to $25,000. The goal of providing this money was to assure that team members could attend the collaborative without being constrained by lack of funding to pay for travel expenses, etc. This grant does not provide ongoing funding. Having said that, there is no requirement on how the funds are spent with the exception that the funds must support expanding the use of MAT in jails and drug courts. If a county already has money earmarked for attending these types of trainings, it is up to the participating county agencies to collectively how they would like to use the grant money to support expanded access to MAT for justice involved persons.

This question is regarding the Mandatory Member requirement. In our County, the County Administrator's Office has delegated the contract management and oversight of the jail medical and mental health programs to the Health & Human Services Agency and has no oversight of the contract. Can the #3 requirement in that section be replaced with contract manager from the Health & Human Services Agency? This individual is not the same as the one that is being selected under the requirement for #1 for that section.

It is critical to have someone from the county administrator’s office involved because much of what is discussed crosses many county agencies. The administrator’s office has the scope of authority and budget over all the agencies. Their participation is critical to be able to break down barriers and make decisions for support and conversations between the agencies.

For our letter of support, can I please get your mailing address for the formatting?

The application should not be mailed, it should be emailed to MATinCountyCJ@healthmanagment.com
HMA’s mailing address is 88 Kearney Street, Ste. 1800, San Francisco, CA, 94108.  

Can you please give me a bit more detail about the person representing Drug Courts? We do have a drug court that is very collaborative across several agencies and we are wondering about the intent of the role for this person. We do understand it needs an administrative level staff member. Can you please provide some examples or other direction?

The intent of the goal for this person would be to establish and support the use MAT through the drug court process. For drug court administrators, this would include developing an understanding where MAT fits in within sentencing and release decisions, whether MAT is provided in the jail, and where detainees can access MAT in the community.

Application question: For the narrative responses that indicate no more than a page, will the application be rejected if the answers are only a paragraph or two? Or is the expectation that we provide more substantive responses with historical information etc.

Page limits are only to assure that responses are not overly lengthy. We would like substantive responses that demonstrate what your county is doing, but we brevity is appreciated.

Application question: For question number 5-are you only asking for grant funding? The questions asks about funding that is "awarded." What if our county receives funding through AB109, DMC-ODS, etc, but this wasn't awarded through a competitive process. Should that information be included?

This question relates to grant funding specific to MAT, not AB109 or federal block funding for SUD treatment.

I have a question regarding the additional funds that are made available to participating counties to purchase naloxone. If I am understanding the FAQs correctly, counties do not have to participate in this piece of the program. Is this accurate?

Participation in the Naloxone distribution is not required. Information will be developed later in the project regarding how to apply for the funds, and county teams will determine their interest at that time.

In our county, the Adult System of Care holds the contract for jail health services. Would that qualify us to be the lead agency and receive the funds? Our team would include the clinical lead for the contracted agency as well as representative correctional and county administrative and drug court staff.

It is up to each county to determine the lead agency. If the Adult System of Care fulfills the requirement of Jail Health Services, it can serve as the lead agency. Keep in mind that the MAT Champion needs to be from the lead agency.