The Community Response Team has received its second one-year grant as the mental-health project develops a system to identify and help “super utilizers” of emergency services without repeated 911 calls.
The CRT triumvirate — police officer, fire paramedic and mental-health counselor — respond to mental-health calls in an emergency medical service truck. The specially trained unit works to keep people out of jail or emergency rooms by treating and connecting them to services on the scene.
February marks one year since CRT began operating on a $106,000 grant from Tulsa Area United Way. The involved agencies matched the contribution to operate two 10-hour shifts a week the past 12 months.
In almost a year, CRT stabilized on the spot about 50 percent (162 of 332) of people the unit made contact with through emergency calls. There were 18 of 35 people who avoided a hospital emergency room visit, and 18 of 22 were diverted from jail.