The Client Choice & Hospital Prevention Program — An Innovative way to support people who run the risk of experiencing a psychiatric crisis.
In Marin County people who experience an acute psychiatric crisis are sent to Psychiatric Crisis Services (PES), often times against their will. With the help of MHSA Innovation funding, we are hoping we can learn how to become a system that first, prevents a situation from turning into a crisis, and second, by treating the crisis differently if one does occur. We hope to move away from the most restrictive approach to managing a crisis (i.e. involuntary hospitalization) to a more client-centered and voluntary approach. There are three approaches to this program:
Crisis Planning - Offered by Community Action Marin, this peer-based program will help individuals and families articulate, and document, an individualized plan for services during a time of crisis. The plan will include the kinds of supports a person needs and wants. A person can include information such as the individuals he or she can rely on during a crisis, what tasks need to be taken care of if they are in crisis (i.e. pay rent, feed a pet), and what interventions they prefer. With permission, PES will have a copy of the individualized crisis plan and staff will do their best to honor the specified wishes.
Crisis Residential Home - Run by Buckelew Services, this voluntary program will offer a beautiful, home-like setting where on can recoup and re-stabilize if they do experience a psychiatric crisis. The Crisis Home will be staffed 24-hours a day and will employ both professional and peer staff. Individuals will be offered individual, group and family therapy. If one does not already have a crisis plan, they can get assistance to complete one. The Crisis Home staff will work very closely with the individual’s circle of support, including family, friends, psychiatric treatment professionals, substance abuse professionals, health care providers, and naturally occurring resources such as 12-step programs, faith-based organizations and any other entity that is important to the individual’s recovery. This program will also allow for one to stay in their community during a time of crisis. An individual can stay in this home-like setting for up to 30 days.
Peer and Professional Staffing – is an important, and key element to both of the services mentioned above. We believe that combining the use of professionals and peers, who have lived experience, will result in a more effective, and speedier recovery. The goal is that peers work as equals, side-by-side with professional, as treatment partners who will aid in an individuals recovery.