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In this special virtual podcast from the American Psychiatric Association Foundation, we hear from experts on addressing individuals with mental illness in our criminal justice system.
Communities across the country are actively working to address how individuals with mental illness enter our criminal justice system. A key piece to ensure they either don’t enter in the first place or don’t come back to the system is making sure they get connected to support services that they need. Two of the crucial questions communities should be looking at in addressing connection to care are: 1) Did that person make it to their first appointment and 2) Did they like the provider and feel engaged? The ways in which communities address these questions can be vastly different, but there are some key things every community should consider. We need to understand our state and local systems, the barriers and facilitators that may exist in those systems, and the support services that should be included when connecting individuals with mental illness to care.
As we better understand what’s involved in connecting individuals with mental illness to the care and support they need, communities should rethink how they view their involvement with jails - moving from passive participation to actively engaging in partnership with them. Let’s return to the conversation between Dr. Hurley, Dr. DeVido, and Donna to learn how to do just that.