Gov. Evers, DHS visit 'hub and spoke' center using pilot program to tackle substance abuse

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- There's a pilot program in Wisconsin that's addressing substance abuse issues across the states.

On Tuesday, Oct. 26, Gov. Tony Evers and other state leaders talked with collaborators at Wisconsin Community Services (WCS) to learn more about how the new model works.

The pilot program is a "hub and spoke" model that health providers believe will better support those working to recover from substance abuse.

"It's a partnership, you know, clearly you're doing the hard work but we want to make sure that this program is a success and we have an opportunity now for us to evaluate," said Gov. Evers.

This is a collaborative partnership between the state Department of Health Services and local organizations.

Places like WCS act a resource hub for individuals that then connects them to programs to benefit them and their recovery process.

It's set to be at least a two-and-a-half-year program that DHS Secretary designee Karen Timberlake says "puts the person in the middle".

Both she and others today say that's equally important because not all treatment providers work together in this process.

"The resources are there but I as an individual I am unlikely to know, for sure, what I'm even eligible for and how I can access those services," said WI DHS Secretary designee Karen Timberlake.

"We are hopeful that we'll have some good outcomes. It won't be perfect but it is a solution to a lot of issues that we've had here in our county," said Maya Robinson, assistant director of the 'Hub & Spoke' Team at WCS.

Three sites across the state, including WCS, are piloting this program.

Depending on its success, Timberlake said legislators will most likely support this in the next biennial budget.

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