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Substance Use: Advance health and resilience by advocating for prevention, treatment, risk mitigation, and recovery for people affected by substance use disorders.

Past-month binge drinking

Current Value




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Story Behind the Indicator

The "Story Behind the Curve" helps us understand why the data on is the way that it is in our community. When we understand the root causes of our community problems, we have a better chance of finding the right solutions, together.

What's Helping? These are the positive forces at work in our community and beyond that influence this issue in our community.

  • Several outpatient facilities in Haywood County offer treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder, including counseling and support, information about employment resources, health education services.
  • Community support groups
  • Non-privatized alcohol retail stores (only liquor) and limited hours of sale.
  • Law enforcement leadership, combined with government and healthcare leadership, make it possible tackle the issue as a community.

What's Hurting? These are the negative forces at work in our community and beyond that influence this issue in our community.

  • Alcohol consumption increased during the COVID-19 pandemic due to various factors, such as coping with pandemic-related stressors and disrupted treatment access. 
  • Local data about youth substance use is lacking, which hinders the community's ability to apply for federal funding.  
  • Many residents lack adequate housing, living-wage employment, transportation barriers and Medicaid access, making it difficult to achieve and sustain recovery from substance use and mental health disorders.  

Partners With A Role To Play

Partners With a Role in Helping Our Community Do Better on This Issue:

Agency Person Role
Haywood County Health and Human Services Megan Hauser, Darion Vallerga, Jeanine Harris Lead
Haywood Connect Lynn Carlson Collaborate
Haywood Regional Medical Center Lindsey Solomon Collaborate
Haywood County Sheriff’s Office Christina Esmay Support
Haywood County Emergency Services Travis Donaldson Support
Vaya Health Shelly Foreman Collaborate
Mountain Projects, Inc. Libby Ray Collaborate


Tobin Lee Collaborate
Meridian Behavioral Health Services Courtney Mayse Collaborate
Region A Partnership for Children Jody Miller Support
Vecinos, Inc. Yolanda Pinzon Uribe Support
Great by Eight Debbie Ray Support
Haywood County Cooperative Extension Julie Sawyer Support
Haywood County Public Library Jennifer Stuart Support
Blue Ridge Community Health Services Florence Willis Collaborate
National Alliance on Mental Illness/Vaya Health Mary Ann Widenhouse Collaborate


What Works to Do Better

The following actions have been identified by our trauma-informed system of care community advocates, the Substance Use Prevention Alliance, and community members as ideas for what can work for our community to make a difference on Substance Use and Mental Health using a trauma-informed system of care.

(A) Actions and Approaches Identified by Our Partners These are actions and approaches that our partners think can make a difference on substance use disroder and the long-term impacts of trauma.

  • Adverse Childhood Experiences/Trauma- developing a Community Resilience Plan 
  • Conduct community education about overdose prevention and reversal.  
  • Provide risk mitigation services, including naloxone and post-overdose response.  
  • Coordinate presentations by first responders and risk mitigation staff for the Substance Use Prevention Alliance.  Presentations will include post-overdose response protocol and information about risk mitigation interventions.
  • Maintaining long-term provider & patient relationships: continuity of care

(B) What is Currently Working in Our Community These are actions and approaches that are currently in place in our community to make a difference on substance use disroder and the long-term impacts of trauma.

  • Education about safer prescribing practices and naloxone administration.  
  • Education about the effects along the lifespan that trauma may cause.
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment- MAT is an evidence-based method for treating Substance Use Disorders.  Haywood County has several agencies that provide MAT.   Clinics also exist in neighboring counties. 

(C) Evidence-Based Strategies These are actions and approaches that have been shown to make a difference on substance use disroder and the long-term impacts of trauma.

Name of Strategy Reviewed

Level of Intervention 

Trauma-Informed System of Care

Organizational, Community, Societal

Medication-Assisted Treatment

Individual, Interpersonal, Community, Organizational

Decreasing stigma Community, Organizational


Process for Selecting Priority Strategies

Haywood County used a process planning tool refered to as the "Getting to Strategies: Process Plan" designed to move from health priorities to Community Health Improvement Plan strategies. This tool assissted in facilitation when discussing priorities and strategies with work groups. Seven questions were presented to identify: Our ideal vision of Haywood County; What in our community would require change to accomplish our vision; What are the most important measures to reflect positive change; Who plays a role in creating change; What past and current strategies work to make positive change; and What we propose to do this Community Health Improvement Plan cycle (questions below). Once all of our work groups, partners, and community members in attendance agreed on proposed strategies (keeping in mind feasibility, sustainability, level of impact in regard to current resources and capacity) the group voted for their top three substance use and mental health strategies.

  • Questions:
    • What are the quality-of-life conditions we want for the people who live in our community?
    • How can we measure these conditions?
    • What would these conditions look like if we could see them?
    • How are we doing on the most important of these measures?
    • Who are the partners who have a role to play in doing better?
    • What works to do better?
    • What do we propose to do?

Clear Impact Suite is an easy-to-use, web-based software platform that helps your staff collaborate with external stakeholders and community partners by utilizing the combination of data collection, performance reporting, and program planning.

Scorecard Container Measure Action Actual Value Target Value Tag S A m/d/yy m/d/yyyy