GENESEO — Behavioral Health Disorder occurrences have been on a steady rise across the Finger Lakes Region with limited community access to appropriate services for individuals experiencing behavioral health crises.
This has resulted in inappropriate utilization of hospital services and disjointed care for those in need of timely support and intervention.
In Livingston County, mental health and substance abuse were identified as high priority areas in the current community health assessment. There were two 24-hour crisis hotline services available to residents. There was also only one Mobile Integration Team available to respond to callers, and staff was only available during standard business hours. After-hour callers, that met criteria for mobile crisis intervention, were referred to the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office. Oftentimes, 911 calls of this nature result in mental hygiene arrests and preventable admissions to the local hospitals.
As a result of these challenges, Livingston County Mental Health Services, UR Medicine/Noyes Health Mental Health, and CASA-Trinity of Livingston County collaborated to assist in preventing this growing number. Together, they applied for Behavioral Health Community Crisis Stabilization funds, which utilizes FLPPS (Finger Lakes Performing Provider System) monies and were awarded $260,000.
The program will provide after-hours crisis intervention services to individuals in Livingston County by deploying behavioral health clinicians to attend crisis calls with Law Enforcement Officers, to conduct on-site behavioral health and substance use evaluations, and potentially avoid unnecessary hospital admissions. Safety plans are developed during the crisis encounters, and follow-up appointments are scheduled at Noyes or Livingston County Mental Health Clinics, or at CASA Trinity's outpatient clinic. Transportation to and from follow-up appointments can be arranged through CASA-Trinity's Peer Advocate Program.
The program was successfully launched in October and continues to serve Livingston County residents.