To improve the Vigo County Community Correction Dual Diagnosis Program, the Vigo County Council of Commissioners on Tuesday approved two health care provider agreements.
The board approved Ethos Care, based in Fairfield, Ohio, for $ 250 per hour of clinical services rendered. New York-based Talkspace Network LLC has also been approved for $ 1,000 per month, which includes an initial 60-minute psychiatric assessment and medication management, as well as 12 follow-up sessions, every 30 minutes, for l ‘year.
“The number of accused who have participated in the program has grown very rapidly,” said Bill Watson, director of court services who oversees community corrections. “We have sought to have two other agencies involved so that we can continue to provide services in a quick and timely manner.”
While most of the work is done by telemedicine using secure video, there will also be in-person visits from psychiatrists to their networks, Watson told the board, adding that there were 30 persons in work release diagnosed for treatment.
Watson, after the meeting, said the dual diagnosis program was helping people, through the courts, with addiction and mental health issues.
“They are receiving treatment for these two people while they are on work release, stabilized and entering the workforce,” he said.
The difference is that Vigo County and the state of Indiana, as of 2020, have earmarked money for the program, which helps keep people out of county jail.
“We’ve tried to deliver services before, but relied on our community partners because we didn’t have the resources – the money and the people,” Watson said. “But when I made this proposal to the state … and made the proposal from the county side, everyone agreed that this is where we can put resources to try to make a difference for this population. who spends a lot of time going back to jail, ”Watson said.
The program’s budget is around $ 800,000, Watson said, with the county paying $ 525,000 and the state contributing nearly $ 300,000 a year.
“These are the people who have always been a major problem for the justice system and the prison because they just keep retraining (incarceration) because of their mental health, their substance abuse issues. You have to get them. fast immediate services and monitor them.When they are in the community, it is difficult to monitor them.
“While they’re on the road we see them all the time, so it’s easy to watch them while they’re on the ward to try and stabilize them where they’re able to go in the ward. community, to find a job and to keep a job, ”Watson said.
It used to take weeks to get someone into a community program, “but these people don’t have weeks, so now they come in, go into quarantine, are incarcerated and don’t leave the facility for at least a month later we bring them in (to community corrections). They start a mental health assessment and an addiction assessment, and then they start treatment groups.
“They start psychiatric appointments and start getting medication and start having one-on-one sessions, it all starts in the first four weeks and continues through to a six-month process. It takes at least six months to do this. go through that, ”Watson mentioned.
Previously, Watson said people lasted seven to 10 days in the program, but are now in the program longer.
Journalist Howard Greninger can be reached at 812-231-4204 or [email protected] Follow on Twitter @ TribStarHoward.