Crisis Treatment Center keeping people out of jail and giving them help

As seen on Fox17 News, Friday, January 31st 2020, by Kathleen Jacob

It’s been a year since the Mental Health Cooperative opened their Crisis Treatment Center. Mental health and addiction often run hand and hand, making this another option for those struggling with the opioid epidemic.

Sgt. Michael Vaughn works on Metro’s crisis response team and can say first-hand how crucial the Mental Health Co-op’s crisis center is for the area.

“In previous experience, when I first came on the department, it wasn’t unheard of to spend an entire shift at mobile crisis, so in the eight years that I’ve been here, we’re down to getting officers in and out in about nine minutes now,” Sgt. Vaughn said.

Nine minutes and then back on the streets to keep the community safe.

“It also helps us as a resource instead of putting people in jail, we’re actually getting them the help they need,” Sgt. Vaughn said.

Director of Emergency Psychiatric Services Adam Graham says it’s a win-win for police and the person struggling.

“Rather than repeat incarcerations for things like trespassing or disorderly conduct, we’re asking them, ‘Hey, bring folks here and let us provide what’s needed. Let’s treat the root cause of what’s going on rather than short term incarceration where no change is actually happening,’” Graham said.

Many times, that mental health crisis is paired with addiction.

“Opiates are definitely something that we’re seeing a lot more of whether it be prescription opiates or heroin,” Medical Director Adrienne Halvati said.

Halvati says often times people struggling with addiction can’t see a way out.

“People get to the end of their rope because they don’t know what to do in terms of their addiction, so that also affects their mental health, so they come in here where we’re able to talk to them about both,” Halvati said.

To access crisis services, call the Crisis Treatment Center’s triage line at 615-726-0125 or the toll-free line at 855-274-7471. They also allow people to walk into their 24/7 walk-in center located at 250 Cumberland Bend Drive in Nashville. Find more locations here.

Source: Fox17