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$200,000 federal grant awarded for rural opioid response planning

Chippewa Falls, WI – A $200,000 *grant from the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) will provide additional resources to address substance use disorders, with a special focus on opioid use disorder in northern Wisconsin counties, including Chippewa, Barron, Rusk and Washburn.

The grant was awarded in August 2020 to L.E. Phillips-Libertas Treatment Center, a service of HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Chippewa Falls. The treatment center will use the HRSA grant, as well as an additional $20,000 grant from the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis Foundation, to lead and operate the Northwest Wisconsin Heroin Opioid Prevention Education (NW WI HOPE) Consortium in Chippewa, Barron, Rusk and Washburn Counties.

This consortium will consist of a team of representatives from six local organizations: L.E. Phillips Libertas-Treatment Center and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital, Prevea Health, Barron County Sheriff’s Department, Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College, Rusk County Department of Health and Human Services, and CESA 10. The NW WI HOPE Consortium will be dedicated to:
  • Assessing the current resources available in Chippewa, Barron, Rusk and Washburn Counties for the prevention and treatment of substance use disorders, including opioid use disorder
  • Identify what additional resources are needed in Chippewa, Barron, Rusk and Washburn Counties for the prevention and treatment of substance use disorders, including opioid use disorder
  • Developing a comprehensive strategic and workforce plan to strengthen and sustain prevention and treatment resources in all four counties for the long-term.
Toni Simonson, executive director of behavioral health at L.E. Phillips-Libertas Treatment Center, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital and Prevea Health said her team is grateful to have additional support and resources for rural areas of Wisconsin. “The HOPE Consortium will allow us to identify and address gaps to improve treatment, prevention and recovery of persons experiencing the devastating effects of opioid and substance use disorder.”

The NW WI HOPE consortium is not limited to its current membership list and welcomes new organizations. If interested in joining as a member, contact Katie Daul at (920) 848-6329 or via email at

*This news release is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $200,000 with 100 percent funded by HRSA/HHS and no amount or percent funded by nongovernment sources. (A separate additional grant of $20,000 to support the HRSA project work plan was committed by the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis Foundation.) The news release contents are those of the project authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA/HHS, or the U.S. Government.

Grant #: G2540061-01-00
Program #: HRSA-20-109; CFDA 93.912
Award: $200,000 (over 18 mos.); 9/1/2020 through 2/28/2022
Project: HRSA Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) Planning Grant
Grantee/Applicant: HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital, LEP Libertas, Prevea (Chippewa Falls, WI)

About HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital
HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the Founding Institute, and it is an affiliate of Hospital Sisters Health System. Since 1885, it has served the people of the Chippewa Falls area with health care that is high tech and high touch. Known locally for the quality of the care it provides patients, the hospital has been recognized nationally for its outstanding patient satisfaction levels.

About Hospital Sisters Health System
Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) mission is to reveal and embody Christ’s healing love for all people through our high quality, Franciscan health care ministry. HSHS provides state-of-the-art health care to our patients and is dedicated to serving all people, especially the most vulnerable, at each of our 15 Local Systems and physician practices in Illinois (Breese, Decatur, Effingham, Greenville, Highland, Litchfield, O’Fallon, Shelbyville and Springfield) and Wisconsin (Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Oconto Falls, Sheboygan, and two in Green Bay). HSHS is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries. For more information about HSHS, visit For more information about Hospital Sisters of St. Francis, visit

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Public Relations
(715) 717-4747
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