North Country CMH Announces New First Responders Manual for Behavioral Health Intervention

Nina Martenson, NCCMH Charlevoix County Center Supervisor

CHARLEVOIX, MI – North Country Community Mental Health (NCCMH), along with Charlevoix County community partners, has released the Charlevoix County First Responder’s Guide for Behavioral Interventions. This guide was created as an outcome of Charlevoix County’s Stepping-Up Initiative and was personalized to Charlevoix County stakeholders and processes.

Nina Martenson, MA, LLP, QIDP, QMHP, and NCCMH Charlevoix Center Supervisor, explained that “The purpose of the First Responder’s Guide for Behavioral Interventions is to provide community partners with a clear outline of processes and procedures related to behavioral health interventions, especially at the intersection with the criminal justice system.”

The Guide identifies which agencies the procedure or process applies to, at each step, and assigns responsibility for the task(s). The First Responder’s Guide also represents the underlying team effort and agreement on roles and resources involved in providing an integrated delivery of services to the community.

Martenson said, “This manual represents the strong network of community partnerships and individual professional relationships that demonstrate compassion for individuals, the community, and the professional team of first responders who serve the community.”

Brian Babbitt, NCCMH Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are pleased to have completed this comprehensive resource to assist the community in responding to people with mental illness, reducing the number of people with mental illness in jail, and increasing their access to appropriate treatment.”

Babbitt added, “Charlevoix County was one of the first counties to adopt the Stepping-Up initiative in 2015. In Charlevoix County, the Stepping-Up vision is to be a community in which individuals with mental illness and/or substance use disorders who come in contact with the criminal justice/legal system receive treatment and services based on research, data, best practices and compassion.”

Martenson added, “We welcome any individual or organization to utilize this excellent resource, which is now available to community partners and individuals in the community alike.”

The First Responder’s Guide and an index of related forms may be accessed at http://www.norcocmh.org/charfirstrespondersguide/.

North Country Community Mental Health provides services to residents of Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet, Kalkaska, and Otsego Counties experiencing a serious mental illness, severe emotional problem, or intellectual/developmental disability, including individuals with co-occurring substance use disorder.

Persons wishing to know more about North Country Community Mental Health are encouraged to visit www.norcocmh.org or to access services call 877-470-7130.

Collaborators include:

North Country Community Mental Health
East Jordan Family Health Center
Northern Michigan Regional Entity
BASES Recovery Center
Charlevoix County Courts
Charlevoix County Prosecuting Attorney
Charlevoix County Sheriff Department
Charlevoix County Jail Emergency Medical Response
Charlevoix County 911 Central Dispatch
Munson Healthcare
Charlevoix Hospital
Psychiatric Inpatient Hospitals
Crisis Residential Units
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services-Charlevoix-Emmet County