A controlled before-and-after evaluation of a mobile crisis partnership between mental health and police services in Nova Scotia

Kisely, Stephen, Campbell, Leslie Anne, Peddle, Sarah, Hare, Susan, Pyche, Mary, Spicer, Don and Moore, Bill (2010) A controlled before-and-after evaluation of a mobile crisis partnership between mental health and police services in Nova Scotia. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 55 10: 662-668. doi:10.1177/070674371005501005

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Author Kisely, Stephen
Campbell, Leslie Anne
Peddle, Sarah
Hare, Susan
Pyche, Mary
Spicer, Don
Moore, Bill
Title A controlled before-and-after evaluation of a mobile crisis partnership between mental health and police services in Nova Scotia
Journal name Canadian Journal of Psychiatry   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0706-7437
1497-0015
Publication date 2010-10-01
Year available 2010
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/070674371005501005
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 55
Issue 10
Start page 662
End page 668
Total pages 7
Place of publication Thousand Oaks, California, United States
Publisher Sage Publications
Language eng
Subject 2738 Psychiatry and Mental health
Abstract Objectives: Police are often the front-line response to people experiencing mental health crises. This study examined the impact of an integrated mobile crisis team formed in partnership between mental health services, municipal police, and emergency health services. The service offered short-term crisis management, with mobile interventions being attended by a plainclothes police officer and a mental health professional. Methods: We used a mixed-methods design encompassing: a controlled before-and-after quantitative comparison of the intervention area with a control area without access to such a service, for 1 year before and 2 years after program implementation; and qualitative assessments of the views of service recipients, families, police officers, and health staff at baseline and 2 years afterward. Results: The integrated service resulted in increased use by people in crisis, families, and service partners (for example, from 464 to 1666 service recipients per year). Despite increased service use, time spent on-scene and call-to-door time were reduced. At year 2, the time spent on-scene by police (136 minutes) was significantly lower than in the control area (165 minutes) (Student t test = 3.4, df = 1649, P < 0.001). After adjusting for confounders, people seen by the integrated team (n = 295) showed greater engagement than control subjects as measured by outpatient contacts (b = 1.3, χ = 92.7, df = 1, P < 0.001). The service data findings were supported by the qualitative results of focus groups and interviews. Conclusions: Partnerships between the police department and mental health system can improve collaboration, efficiency, and the treatment of people with mental illness.
Formatted abstract
Objectives: Police are often the front-line response to people experiencing mental health crises. This study examined the impact of an integrated mobile crisis team formed in partnership between mental health services, municipal police, and emergency health services. The service offered short-term crisis management, with mobile interventions being attended by a plainclothes police officer and a mental health professional.
Methods: We used a mixed-methods design encompassing: a controlled before-and-after quantitative comparison of the intervention area with a control area without access to such a service, for 1 year before and 2 years after program implementation; and qualitative assessments of the views of service recipients, families, police officers, and health staff at baseline and 2 years afterward.
Results: The integrated service resulted in increased use by people in crisis, families, and service partners (for example, from 464 to 1666 service recipients per year). Despite increased service use, time spent on-scene and call-to-door time were reduced. At year 2, the time spent on-scene by police (136 minutes) was significantly lower than in the control area (165 minutes) (Student t test = 3.4, df = 1649, P < 0.001). After adjusting for confounders, people seen by the integrated team (n = 295) showed greater engagement than control subjects as measured by outpatient contacts (b = 1.3, χ2 = 92.7, df = 1, P < 0.001). The service data findings were supported by the qualitative results of focus groups and interviews. Conclusions: Partnerships between the police department and mental health system can improve collaboration, efficiency, and the treatment of people with mental illness.
Keyword Mixed-methods
Integrated service
Mobile crisis unit
Police
Mental health
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID PHE 81966
PSO-2006-4134
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Queensland Centre for Health Data Services
Official 2011 Collection
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 19 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 07 Nov 2010, 10:14:58 EST