Beacon Behavioral: Crisis Solutions

The need for crisis services in the United States has never been stronger. Traumatic national catastrophes, such as mass shootings, are on the rise. The opioid epidemic shows no signs of abating. Suicide rates are increasing. Access to mental health services remains elusive for many Americans.

1 in 8 visits to the emergency department (ED): A mental health or substance use disorder problem1
2001 – 2017: The suicide rate increased by 31%2

82,000: Estimated annual opioid overdose deaths by 20253

Helping John Doe out of a crisis

Beacon Health Options has re-envisioned what an effective crisis system should look like. We believe best-in-class crisis services should do more than refer individuals to providers. Instead, they should resolve crises in real-time.

Significant cost-savings can result from crisis services, due to reduced inpatient utilization, emergency department diversion and more appropriate use of community-based services.1

A person in crisis enters the system after a mobile crisis unit visits him at home. The team stabilizes his crisis and then conducts an onsite assessment, which provides a real-time picture of his condition. They connect this person to care that meets his specific needs. However, it doesn’t stop there.

The mobile crisis team helps him sign up for appropriate benefits – or connects him to someone who can, such as a peer. To ensure he remains in care, he will receive 7 to 14-day mobile follow-up services to address any concerns.

The mental health crisis is resolved with positive results.

  • A trip to the ER is avoided.
  • Non-clinical needs are addressed, which promises for more successful involvement in care and long-term recovery.
  • Risk of harm to the member is reduced and resources used more efficiently.

From crisis to long-term recovery*

Meaningful crisis services focus on prevention, recovery and resiliency over hospitalization or involuntary custody. An effective crisis system ensures the quality of these services that go beyond stabilization by supporting the five phases of recovery: prevention, early intervention, acute intervention, crisis treatment and reintegration. Beacon provides system oversight so providers can do what they’re meant to do: provide excellent care to people who need it.

  • To learn what Beacon is doing with crisis services in several states, click on the links below.

Georgia

Beacon operates as the Georgia Collaborative ASO, in partnership with Behavioral Health Link and Delmarva Foundation, to provide telephonic and mobile crisis services for the Georgia Crisis and Access Line (GCAL).

Massachusetts

Beacon’s Massachusetts Behavioral Health Partnership oversees the statewide crisis system, including a toll-free crisis line. Typing in their zip code, callers connect to their local emergency service team, which can include mobile-crisis dispatch and intervention.

Washington

For three state regions, Beacon manages the behavioral health crisis system, which includes a 24/7 crisis hotline and mobile community-based assessments and interventions.

1https://www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov/reports/statbriefs/sb227-Emergency-Department-Visit-Trends.pdf
2https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/suicide.shtml
3https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2723405

*Developed by Kappy Madenwald