Monday, November 24, 2014     Volume: 15, Issue: 37
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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on April 16th, 2014, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 15, Issue 6 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 15, Issue 6

A state grant boosts the county's mental health services

BY AMY ASMAN

Lompoc is expected to soon have a mobile crisis support team unit of its own, thanks to a $2.6 million grant from the California Health and Facilities Financing Authority.

Pending approval from the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors, the department of Alcohol, Drug, and Mental Health Services (ADMHS) will use the money to help pay for the mobile crisis team in Lompoc—the only region in the county without one—as well as a new crisis stabilization unit and crisis residential home in Santa Barbara.

This new grant augments the $8.3 million in state funds awarded to the department in January to help pay for crisis triage teams in each region of the county.

“[Mental health crisis] beds are tremendously impacted throughout the county,” the department’s chief strategy officer, Suzanne Grimmesey, told the Sun.

The mobile team, she said, will give residents emergency care outside of an emergency-room setting. The new grant is expected to give the Lompoc community its own team. Up until now, the Santa Maria-based mobile team was pulling double duty.

“The Santa Maria team would be 100 percent dedicated to Santa Maria,” Grimmesey said.

Composed of a peer recovery assistant, mental health specialist, and psychiatric nurse, mobile teams respond to people who are potentially experiencing a mental health crisis. Team members conduct evaluations, make sure people are stabilized, and connect them with much-needed resources. The triage teams aid the mobile teams by offering interventions and follow-up care.

ADMHS provides treatment, rehabilitation, and support services to approximately 7,600 clients with mental illness and 4,500 clients with substance abuse disorders annually.