January 2021 Edition
Crisis Response News and More
Welcome to the January 2021 edition of the Southwest Iowa MHDS Regional Newsletter. In this edition you will learn about the Region's Crisis Stabilization System progress in FY 2020. The Region is excited to announce a new addition to our team.
The Region's Annual Report: Crisis Stabilization System
Each year, the Region reports the progress of its Crisis Stabilization System to the State. Due to recent legislative changes, the Region felt it was important for our readers to see how our crisis services have grown over the past few years. As we move forward in the development of our Crisis Assess Network (CAN) and the Children's Behavioral Health system, these services will continue to be vital. We hope to see continued growth and enhancement in each of these services in the coming years.   
During FY20, the Mental Health Crisis Response Team (MHCRT) continued to expand its services to rural law enforcement and critical access hospitals throughout the region. Although the original focus of MHCRT was to support law enforcement during encounters with individuals experiencing mental health crises to avoid unnecessary incarceration and hospitalizations, the region recognized the need to support rural critical access hospitals because people often seek help during a mental health crisis from hospital emergency departments. The feedback from our law enforcement partners on the quality of services provided by the MHCRT has been positive. They find it not only saves them time, more importantly, it helps individuals and families in crisis access the support they need. 

The MHCRT also plays a vital role in providing assessments to individuals, who as an alternative to filing civil commitment, choose a voluntary assessment through pre-commitment services. The final service to benefit residents in our region involves court ordered assessments whereby a Judge requests an assessment from the MHCRT on filings that may need additional information before making the determination to order a commitment. 
The Crisis Service System works to utilize a process of warm handoffs from one service to the next. The Hope4Iowa Crisis Call line, MHCRT, and our Crisis Stabilization Residential Service communicate regularly to continue to enhance the handoff process. These services are the foundation of the new Crisis Access Network in development within our region.  

Additional details on outcomes and data from these services can be found below.   For the full report please read the FY 2020 Annual Report on the Region's website at :

Mental Health Crisis Response Team (MHCRT) provides immediate therapeutic intervention for mental illness and substance abuse crises wherever the crisis occurs. MHCRT data represent the total number of individuals assessed by the Mental Health Crisis Response Team. From FY16 through FY20 the MHCRT completed 1176 assessments. In FY 20, MHCRT completed 336 assessments.

Turning Pointe is a short-term, home-like crisis stabilization residential service for individuals in mental health crisis. Turning Pointe opened its doors as a five-bed crisis stabilization residential service on January 18, 2016. After a temporary closure due to flood damage in March 2019, Turning Pointe reopened on April 8 at a new location as a ten-bed facility. During FY20, the CSRS closed temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since opening its doors in 2016, there have been 659 admissions to Turning Pointe CSRS.  

Hope4Iowa Crisis Call Line began operations in June 2015. The service was implemented to serve as the first point of contact for the Region’s crisis stabilization system of services. In the line graph below, each data point represents the total number of documented calls that occurred during the fiscal year.  As the graphic indicates, Hope4Iowa Crisis Call Line provided services to 2,133 callers during the first five fiscal years of operation. 
Welcome Miranda To Our Team!
We are excited to announce our newest Regional Service Coordinator. Miranda Wachter joined the Region on 12/28/2020.

Miranda had previously worked as a Transition Care Coordinator at CHI’s Lasting Hope Recovery Center for 3 ½ years and before CHI, she worked as a Case Manager for Pottawattamie County Community Services for 9 years.

Miranda lives in Omaha with her husband and three children, ages 11, 2 and 4 months. In her “free” time, Miranda enjoys exercise, spending time with family and friends, exploring the outdoors with her family, and trying new recipes. 

Miranda is excited to join the Region and return to serving Southwest Iowa! She has a passion for serving others and mental health. Miranda loves the work that she does and is excited to make a difference.
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