We support a complete continuum of behavioral health services by addressing gaps in the prevention and treatment system. We build practical, statewide approaches to preventing mental illness and substance use disorders. We also help communities respond more effectively to people in crisis, improve community-based care for individuals with behavioral health issues, and help communities implement new partnerships to address the most pressing behavioral health challenges.
Prevention: Mental Illness & Substance Use Disorder Prevention
Communities that Care helps communities select and implement prevention programs that are best suited for their specific needs. The PAX Good Behavior Game helps early grade students develop resilience, increase protective factors, and reduce substance use and delinquent behaviors later in life.
We are also working to strengthen the mental illness and substance use disorder prevention workforce by supporting the development of a prevention workforce certificate at the University of Montana.
Crisis Intervention: Behavioral Health Crisis Systems
We help communities redesign their crisis systems. By providing timely access to behavioral health services, an effective crisis system improves outcomes and helps avoid unnecessary ER visits and justice system involvement.
All too often, when someone experiences a mental health crisis, they end up in the emergency room or jail – settings that are seldom equipped to care for someone who needs behavioral health care. Emergency departments in Montana reported that as many as 30% and in some cases up to 50% of people admitted to the emergency department have a behavioral health diagnosis. This system is expensive, strains emergency and law enforcement resources, and all too often fails to give people the care they need.
In partnership with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services Addictive and Mental Disorders Division, we developed a series of learning sessions and materials that go over the components of an effective crisis system and help guide implementation. Visit the library of learning session recordings.
Through grants and technical assistance, we also support communities to develop coalitions, complete system mapping to align behavioral health and criminal justice system resources, implement strategies to respond to a behavioral health crisis more effectively, and identify sustainable crisis funding.
Treatment: Community-Based Treatment
We help communities implement the Program for Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) which allows people with longstanding, severe, or disabling mental illnesses to live and function safely in their homes and communities rather than being hospitalized.
PACT is a behavioral health service delivery model that facilitates community living, psychosocial rehabilitation, and recovery for people whose illnesses haven’t improved with traditional outpatient services. PACT teams made up of a multidisciplinary group of licensed staff and paraprofessionals are available anytime to go out into the community, meet, and provide care for people wherever they are.
This program helps people remain in their homes and communities rather than being hospitalized. It is particularly beneficial for people living in remote and rural communities who may not have easy access to mental health services.
In partnership with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, we support regions across the state to implement the new PACT program. For more information, visit the DPHHS website.
Recovery: Health Partnerships
We help develop partnerships between organizations that serve people with behavioral health diagnoses. For example, we support new collaborations between health care providers and the justice system. These partnerships help provide team-based care to people in the justice system, improving health outcomes and reducing recidivism.
We also help social service and health care providers collaborate to support individuals and families with complex health and social needs. For example, we help communities implement recovery-focused interventions like peer support and treatment courts. These interventions collaborate with housing and health systems to provide permanent supportive housing to individuals who frequently use emergency services.
We are currently offering grant funding to support communities interested in redesigning their crisis systems. Our support will help communities develop coalitions, complete system mapping to align behavioral health and criminal justice system resources, implement strategies to respond to behavioral health crises more effectively, and identify sustainable crisis funding sources. All project applications are by invitation only. For more information, please contact our office.
Program for Asservice Treatment (PACT)
In partnership with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, we are supporting regions across the state to implement the new PACT program. For more information visit the DPHHS website.