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Health And Public Safety

Behavioral Health Initiative Announces Country’s First Community Engagement Teams

01/17/2018

Today the Behavioral Health Initiative announced an additional program that will play a major role in forming a continuum of behavioral health services in the Central New Mexico region. Community Engagement Teams [CET] will provide assessment and referrals to willing participants who have a behavioral health condition. The teams will aid these individuals and their families pre-crisis, post-crisis, or at-risk of experiencing a crisis to cope with the effects of mental illness. They will not respond to actively-violent or in-crisis calls.

Beginning in early March, the Community Engagement Teams will be available to meet people and their families in the comfort of their own home or community. The Teams will be comprised of a combination of clinicians, peers with lived experience, and case management professionals.

“While some features of the Community Engagement Teams are incorporated into currently existing programs, to our knowledge this is the first community engagement team in the country,” said Commissioner Debbie O’Malley. “We attribute this first-of-its kind program to the tireless efforts of community advocates, BHI staff and my fellow elected leaders.”

Individuals or family members who could benefit from the CETs will be referred through crisis and warm lines, such as the New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (1-855-NMCRISIS), as well as the local law enforcement Crisis Intervention Team database and case management system.

Some of the expected results of the CETs are to decrease unnecessary hospital visits and the use of the criminal justice system in handling non-crisis situations. While seeing an increase in people connected to services, and improved stabilization and community support for people with a behavioral health condition and their family members.

As a pilot program, the CETs will be funded with $500,000 for the first year. Data and outcomes will be collected and measured; if the results are positive, the program will continue to be supported with Behavioral Health Initiative funding.

Today the Behavioral Health Initiative announced an additional program that will play a major role in forming a continuum of behavioral health services in the Central New Mexico region. Community Engagement Teams [CET] will provide assessment and referrals to willing participants who have a behavioral health condition. The teams will aid these individuals and their families pre-crisis, post-crisis, or at-risk of experiencing a crisis to cope with the effects of mental illness. They will not respond to actively-violent or in-crisis calls.

Beginning in early March, the Community Engagement Teams will be available to meet people and their families in the comfort of their own home or community. The Teams will be comprised of a combination of clinicians, peers with lived experience, and case management professionals.

Click below to see a video of the entire news conference. 

Individuals or family members who could benefit from the CETs will be referred through crisis and warm lines, such as the New Mexico Crisis and Access Line (1-855-NMCRISIS), as well as the local law enforcement Crisis Intervention Team database and case management system.

 

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