Components of the Crisis Services System

Volunteers of America (VOA) operates a 24/7 Toll-free crisis and professional triage Line for the North Sound Region.  Toll-Free Crisis and Triage line services support individuals and families in distress and seeking assistance with crisis situations. These services are responsible to assess the urgency of the needs and identify the supports and services necessary to meet those needs.  This includes dispatching “mobile crisis outreach teams” consisting of Designated Crisis Responders (DCRs), other Mental Health Professionals (MHPs), and sometimes Chemical Dependency Processionals (CDP) and/or Certified Peer Counselors.
Compass Health operates 24/7 mobile crisis outreach teams (MCOT and IMPACT teams) for Skagit, Island, San Juan, and Whatcom counties.  Snohomish County Human Services operates a 24/7 mobile crisis outreach team in Snohomish County.
Mobile crisis Intervention services provide evaluation and short-term intervention and referral services to individuals with an emergent behavioral health condition and when there is an immediate threat to the individual’s health or safety.  Crisis Services are intended to stabilize the person in crisis, prevent further deterioration and provide immediate treatment in a location best suited to meet the needs of the individual and in the least restrictive environment possible. Crisis intervention services are not intensive case management programs, though Crisis agencies can work with individuals for an extended period to provide linkages to behavioral health providers and other support systems.  
Mobile crisis intervention services include both voluntary outreach services and investigations conducted by a Designated Crisis Responder (DCR).  Mobile crisis outreach staff shall respond within two (2) hours of the referral to an emergent crisis and within twenty-four (24) hours for referral to an urgent crisis.  North Sound’s BH-ASO has established referral and screening protocols to ensure outreaches are conducted safety and efficiently. 
Crisis Intervention services also involve follow up services that includes phone contacts, additional outreaches or office-based next day appointments scheduled with the crisis agency.  Crisis service providers are also partnering with local law enforcement and first responders to develop co-response strategies and to identify community outreach needs.
To access North Sound BH-ASO’s Crisis system policies and procedures, please visit our website here and review Section 1700: Crisis Services.  The specific policy for Mobile Crisis Outreach Services can be found here

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