Executive Council to vote on extending Doorway contracts


New Hampshire Bulletin

Published: 11-07-2023 5:56 PM

Executive councilors on Wednesday will vote on a request to extend contracts for The Doorway, the state’s hub and spoke approach to addressing substance use disorders. 

The Doorway is made up of nine locations throughout that state, each intended to provide a single entry point for individuals seeking assistance with addiction and recovery. The program launched in 2019, receiving funding from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration State Opioid Response grant.

On Wednesday, the Executive Council will vote whether to again extend contracts with eight contractors operating “hub” locations, and increase the total contract by $9.7 million. Those contractors are:

Catholic Medical Center in Manchester

Concord Hospital

Concord Hospital Laconia

Littleton Hospital Association

Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital in Lebanon 

Southern New Hampshire Health System in Nashua

Cheshire Medical Center in Keene

Wentworth-Douglass Hospital in Dover 

The physical Doorway locations, which accept walk-ins, can be found at https://www.thedoorway.nh.gov/doorway-locations. 

According to documents filed with the Executive Council, the Greater Manchester Doorway would receive the greatest price increase at $2.3 million. 

The Executive Council has approved contract extensions for The Doorway several times before. In her note to councilors, Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Lori Weaver wrote that the state received delayed notification of federal funding in September. The contracts lapsed on Sept. 29, before she could bring the request forward to the council and the governor. 

“The purpose of this request is to continue providing a network of Doorways to ensure access to substance use related support services throughout the state in order to decrease the rates of fatal overdose and increase access to substance use related health care,” Weaver wrote.

It’s estimated that approximately 24,000 individuals will be served by The Doorway between Sept. 30 of this year and Sept. 29, 2024, inclusive of those previously engaged with the program and new individuals seeking services.

According to data reports from The Doorway for May of this year, the most recently available, 1,052 individuals were served that month, 434 treatment referrals were made, and 3,232 naloxone kits were distributed. The Doorway locations seeing the most activity from new calls were Dover and Manchester.

Opioid disorders were the most common reason individuals were seen, while alcohol was the second most common. 

If the contracts are approved, Weaver said the “hubs” will continue to provide resources to strengthen existing prevention, treatment, and recovery support programs. They provide immediate screening and evidence-based assessments to determine the proper level of care, transport individuals to safe housing while they await treatment, and administer referrals and case management, she said.