April 2021 Edition
Crisis Response News and More
Welcome to the April 2021 edition of the Southwest Iowa MHDS Regional Newsletter. In this edition, we are excited to inform you about the Region's Central office move to a new location in the Pottawattamie County Courthouse. We will also share updated information about Waubonsie's Turning Pointe closure and reopening of a new CSRS in our region. Finally, the Region will share stigma fighting information from Brain Health Iowa and Iowa MHDS Regions.
Central Office Is Moving To A New Location April 15-16th.

We are excited to announce that our central office in Pottawattamie County is moving to a new location across the street in the Pottawattamie County Courthouse (previously the Council Bluffs Police Department offices attached to the southeast side of the courthouse). 

We will begin the moving process on April 15-16, 2021 and will re-open at our new location on Monday, April 19th with our normal business hours (8 am-4:30 pm). 

Please update your records with our new address:

227 S. 6th St., Suite 128
Council Bluffs, IA 51501
Our other contact information will remain the same including email addresses and phone numbers. 

We are excited about our new location which will allow for more meeting space and privacy for our staff and clients.  
Spring time brings new beginnings.
In the fall of 2015, SWIA MHDS awarded Waubonsie Mental Health Center (WMHC) the proposal for a new service called Crisis Stabilization Residential Services (CSRS). The program’s purpose is to support individuals in a mental health crisis and allow them to remain within the community instead of being admitted into inpatient acute care. Waubonsie’s Turning Pointe (CSRS) opened its doors in Clarinda, Iowa, in January 2016, accepting referrals from all 9 Counties within our region as well as nearby regions.

Waubonsie MHC made the decision to discontinue its CSRS service after June 30, 2021; however, the Region is excited to announce that ZION Integrated Behavioral Health Services has offered to take on the program and keep it located in the Clarinda area. Laurie Cooley, the Director for ZION, stated that her agency recognizes CSRS services are a critical needed level of care for individuals experiencing a mental health crisis. “We are excited to partner with Southwest Iowa MHDS Region to keep this program operating, as it is a necessary service for our community” said Cooley. Laurie and her staff will be working closely with the Region to avoid interruption to service and ensure options for care continue to be readily accessible. 

ZION Integrated Behavioral Health Services currently operates a CSRS called Safe Harbor Center located in Woodward, Iowa, so they have the accreditation and experience to make this a smooth transition for both the staff and clients. When ZION opens the new CSRS it will most likely have a new name and will be an 8 bed facility along with several beds for a Transitional Living Program. According to Cooley, “Individuals typical stay at a CSRS facility usually is less than one week. During that time, staff work on a personal one-on-one basis to link the individual with a network of appropriate community resources to aid in support in their home environment for success in their day-to-day life prior to discharging.”

The Region is excited for a new beginning for the CSRS with ZION Integrated Behavioral Health Services. “We feel this is valuable program and are extremely pleased that Zion is willing to expand their work in our communities” said Suzanne Watson, CEO of SWIA MHDS Region. The Region will keep our readers and clients/families posted through our website as we move forward with this new endeavor and have a clear re-open date for the ZION Integrated Behavioral Health Service’s CSRS. As of now, Waubonie’s Turning Pointe remains opens and is currently taking referrals.

For Admission criteria and more information about Turning Pointe CSRS please read below.  

Admission Criteria for Adult CSRS

Residency is available for:
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Experiencing a mental health crisis
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Major depression
  • Unmanaged anxiety
  • Trauma triggered event
  • Manic episode
  • Racing thoughts
  • Voluntary individuals

Due to accreditation restrictions and community location, services are not available for:
  • Registered sex offenders
  • Minors under age 18
  • Individuals with recent/chronic histories of violence
  • Mental health committals
  • Court-ordered emergency holds

Behavioral Expectations
  • In order to be admitted to CSRS, potential clients must agree to adhere to the following rules:
  • Acceptance of 24-hour care, including bed checks during the night hours
  • Acceptance of Personal Belongings Policy
  • Acceptance of Video Surveillance Policy
  • Acceptance of Designated Cell Phone Usage
  • Acceptance of programming to learn daily living, leisure, social skills, and utilize skills taught throughout the stay
  • Prior approval to participate in kitchen activities
  • Acceptance of a same-gender roommate
  • Acceptance of a routine within the home, which may consist of appointments, meals, group time, lights out, etc.
  • Keep room clean and clean after self
  • One-on-one time with Crisis Counselors to develop goals in becoming self-sufficient
  • Acceptance of individual counseling and group therapy
  • Understanding of acceptable behaviors while in the community and neighborhood
  • The ability and responsibility to retain their rights as a citizen

Conditions for Discharge
  • Client can leave against medical advice (discharge is voluntary)
  • Client can request discharge
  • Provider is unable to meet client’s service needs
  • Client leaves residence without supervision
  • Client is admitted into a medical facility
  • Client is admitted into a long-term inpatient facility
  • Client refusal to participate in daily routine, activities, counseling, therapy, group sessions, and showing no inclination to improve his or her mental health/mental stability could lead to discharge
  • Client has reached the maximum length of stay allowed

Attention: If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, please go to your local emergency department or contact 911. Individuals that seek intervention can still be approved for services at a CSRS. Please visit with the physician or law enforcement about making a referral to a CSRS.

Recognizing Stigmatizing Language
Brain Health Now is a grassroots organization dedicated to ending the stigma surrounding the term “mental illness”.

Over 50 million Americans have diagnosable brain health disorders each year. These disorders remain shrouded in misunderstanding and stigma, which is one reason why we need to reframe the conversation away from mental illness and toward brain health per Brain Health Iowa website.

Their goal is to decrease the stigma by inspiring the public to use different words. Brain health issues and disorders, rather than being character flaws or personal weaknesses, have a biological and neurological basis and often can be successfully treated.

Southwest Iowa MHDS Region and the other 13 Regions have joined efforts with Brain Health Iowa to bring awareness to brain health and how to connect to services.

For more information about Brain Health Iowa and the Iowa MHDS Regions clink on these links.

We are also including a video produced by the Iowa MHDS Regions.
The SWIA MHDS Region's Crisis Stabilization Services

Mental Health Crisis Response Team

Provides multiple crisis service

Precommital screening for residents of the SWIA Region

Assessments for court ordered committals

Telehealth Crisis Response available to SWIA Region residents. Services include assessment, stabilization and referrals to community services. This service can only be initiated by Law Enforcement

These services are expanding into all counties in the Region

For further information, Law Enforcement can contact Jenny Stewart (Director) at 712-325-5619

"To avoid the need for an Emergency Protective Custody hold or inpatient psychiatric hospitalization"

Service provided by Heartland Family Service
Call (712) 303-7066 to make a referral

Referrals accepted 24 hours a day

A screening set up within 24 hours

Accepts referrals from friends, family, emergency departments and outpatient providers

Accepts referrals from Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Monona, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie and Shelby counties

"Provides a safe, caring, and home-like environment to those with a mental illness in crisis while modeling skills needed to successfully navigate in the community"

Service provided by Waubonsie Mental Health Center

Call (844) 673-4469 for help and support

Crisis line available 24/7, toll free and confidential

Connects individuals in crisis to a helping hand and the resources to address and improve mental wellness

Anyone can call, including service providers on behalf of clients and patients

For residents of Cass, Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Monona, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie and Shelby counties

"Improving mental wellness, hope and outcomes for residents of Southwest Iowa in times of crisis"

Service operated by Boys Town