Christie to spend $200M on new substance abuse initiatives

Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie held his first press conference on Friday, march 28, 2014 making it the first presser since January. This comes the day after the reports regarding the bridge scandal were released.

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) _ New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is planning to spend $200 million on new initiatives that he hopes will significantly improve the way the state approaches substance abuse treatment and prevention.

Christie told NJ.com the money will target programs for underserved populations like the uninsured, Medicaid recipients, babies born with addiction and their mothers. He said the money will come from the budgets of eight state departments.

The Republican governor says the initiatives will put more emphasis on making sure care is geared toward sustained sobriety. That will be done by standardizing data collection and building seamless channels for holistic care for addicts through incentive-based programs that reward providers who focus on the long-term.

Christie has made battling opioid abuse a centerpiece of his second term in office.