VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - The Virginia Beach Psychiatric Center cut the ribbon on its newCrisis Intervention Team Assessment Center Thursday.
The new center focuses on individuals dealing with mental healthcrises.
The Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) officers are speciallytrained to "deescalate" situations when a person has a mentalhealth crisis, such as violent or irrational behavior, rather thanhaving 9-1-1 emergency police officers handle it.
“The center exemplifies the meaning of public/privatepartnership,” said Virginia Beach Mayor William D. SessomsJr. “We have pooled resources from the public and privatesector to create a program that not only enhances the public safetyof the community, but streamlines individuals’ access tomental health services and prevents them from entering the criminaljustice system.”
The CIT center will be staffed 24 hours a day, has its ownentrance at the psychiatric center, evaluation room and patientrecords. They will be able to offer care to six to eight patientsper week, according to the press release from the city of VirginiaBeach.
“This partnership is a perfect fit for ourfacility,” said Frank Gallagher, CEO of Virginia BeachPsychiatric Center. “We provide acute psychiatric andsubstance abuse services on a daily basis and it only makes senseto operate a Crisis Intervention Team Assessment Center to ensureindividuals in need of mental health treatment have a better chanceof receiving it. It’s an investment in our community and onewe’re our proud to make.”
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