Tester Delivers More Than $10 Million to Bolster Montana Mental Health Services, Substance Use Disorder Programs

Senator secured in $10,012,392 in the American Rescue Plan funding for Montana programs to address ongoing behavioral health challenges in wake of COVID-19 pandemic

Thanks to funding secured in the American Rescue Plan, Montana is set to receive $10,012,392 in community grant funding to support mental health and substance use disorder services, U.S. Senator Jon Tester announced today.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is distributing $4,372,007 to Montana through the Mental Health Service Block Grant (MHBG) program, and $5,640,385 through the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant (SABG) program.

“This pandemic has been tough on folks, and the rise in behavioral health challenges in its wake have made it clearer than ever that we need to continue to invest in the services that keep Montanans healthy,” said Tester. “This critical funding will help make sure mental health and substance use disorder providers are getting the resources they need to meet the needs of Montana communities, and ensure that no Montanan slips through the cracks.”

The MHBG program supports states’ efforts to provide comprehensive community mental health care services and address gaps in existing treatment services for those with serious mental illness.

The SABG program supports states’ efforts to evaluate and implement plans to prevent, treat, and support recovery for people suffering from substance use disorders. This funding makes additional investments in existing treatment and recovery infrastructure, and provides support for local providers to address unique on-the-ground needs of substance use disorder services.

The American Rescue Plan secured more than $1.5 billion in mental health and substance use disorder services support to address the rising behavioral health challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tester was the only member of Montana’s delegation to vote in favor of this funding.

Tester has been working diligently to ensure Montanans have access to the behavioral health care they need during the COVID-19 pandemic. He secured $2 million for the Montana Emergency COVID-19 Project through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, to provide behavioral health services to individuals impacted by the pandemic. He has continually pushed to expand telehealth across Montana communities, including for Montana veterans and within Tribal communities, to ensure every Montanan can access the care they need.