Northern Nevada will get its first "mobile crisis center" for children this year.
Governor Brian Sandoval has dedicated $2.4 million to a state-wide emergency intervention program.
The number of children admitted to hospitals in Washoe County for mental health crises has increased by more than 2,300 from six years ago. Child and Family Services Clinical Program Manager Ryan Gustafson says parents turn to hospitals or police because they have no place else to go. He says the mobile crisis center can respond immediately to a phone call.
"Launch out and go out to that family dispatch and deal with them where they are at, vs saying okay you need to go to ABC to do ABC, you know go get assessed, provide insurance, hopefully you have the right coverage," says Gustafson.
Gustafson says a mobile crisis program launched in Las Vegas this year showed hospital admissions dropped from the hundreds to just 10 in four months and half of families using the service resolve their crises within 3 days. Northern Nevada's mobile crisis team will cost $760,000 and will have a staff of 8 mental health professionals.