DMHAS: Programs & Services

Southeastern Mental Health Authority
Programs and Services


The Brief Care Program is a structured 24-hour, 15-bed sub-acute residential program serving individuals experiencing psychiatric symptoms who do not require an inpatient level of care. The program can ‘step-down’ people from inpatient care before their return to the community.

The Mobile Outreach Team provides 24-hour crisis assessment and intervention services, hospital or crisis bed screening, referral for temporary respite, support phone calls, one-to-one support (specialing), brief crisis counseling, and referral to appropriate inpatient and outpatient services in the community. The team can provide services in an outreach fashion in the community to assist individuals, families, community agencies and others during an individual’s psychiatric crisis.

The SHARE Line is a confidential, non-crisis telephone/warm line that provides peer recovery support to individuals experiencing distress, fear, sadness, anger, loneliness or who need support and help solving problems.  The SHARE Line is currently available five days per week for four hours per day.


OPtions is an outpatient recovery clinical program for people who are seeking individual and/or group therapy treatment.  Clients who are involved in the OPtions treatment program will also have access to a health care provider for prescribed psychiatric medications.  Trauma informed care is at the foundation of our care and a talented clinical staff offer a wide range of clinical options for recovery. 


Community Recovery Services is a team that provides  intensive, community-based treatment and support to persons with mental health and substance use disorders.  The team, comprised of social workers, nurses, mental health workers, a community integration specialist, a substance abuse specialist, a psychologist and a psychiatrist, promotes partnerships with individuals served to focus on strengths, goals and maximum self determination.

The ACCESS Team is a multidisciplinary clinical  team that provides services to persons with co-occurring disorders (mental health and substance use). Services are flexible and provided in the least restrictive environment while recognizing each individual’s strengths and right to self-determination.

The Wellness Recovery Advocacy Program (WRAP) provides multidisciplinary clinical and case management services to individuals who benefit from outreach and engagement to assist with their recovery. The team assists individuals to enhance their community independence through assessment, recovery planning, provision of clinical support services, linking to and monitoring of services and advocacy.  Recovery plans, which are developed collaboratively with the person served and natural supports, guide the development of individualized interventions.

The Homeless Outreach Advocacy Program (HOAP) is a program designed to provide interim case management services to individuals who are experiencing both mental health and/or substance abuse and housing issues. Individuals who would benefit from intensive, focused, clinical case management services and assistance accessing and maintaining community housing are targeted. The team works closely with the Housing Office and other services to maximize housing opportunities, to support individuals adjusting to community living, and to maintain dignity in the community.


Young Adult Services is an assertive community treatment program designed to provide young people (18-25 years of age) who are ‘aging out’ of the Department of Children and Families, support with their integration into the community. An interdisciplinary clinical team provides services that help individuals to maximize their potential, abide by society’s laws and norms and to respect the rights  an integrity of others in the community.

Most Individuals are provided with assistance in establishing a living situation, clinical services, and assistance with education and/or vocational planning.  In addition, many young people receive assistance in developing independent living skills and are helped to develop appropriate recreational pursuits.


The Forensic Services Team provides conditional release supervision for clients who are under the auspices of the Psychiatric Security Review Board.  Staff provide case management and monitoring to acquittees with a Conditional Release Plan that is designed to meet the client’s specific needs.  This team also conducts a Jail Diversion Program designed to meet the needs of persons with a psychiatric disability who are involved in the judicial systemThe Diversion and Trauma Recovery Program for Veterans operates under a Federal Grant to support local and statewide expansion of jail diversion programs in order to divert veterans with trauma-related disorders from the criminal justice system to trauma-integrated treatment and recovery services.


The Housing Office, a collaborative joint venture by SMHA, Reliance House, Inc. and Sound Community Services, Inc., works with landlords, housing authorities and housing developers to fight discrimination in housing and create the best possible housing opportunities for all SMHA and Network clients.


Supported Employment Services, called Individual Placement and Support, is available to help clients get the jobs they want. Treatment teams and Employment Specialists work to provide support to clients in getting and keeping a job. If extended on-the-job support or coaching is needed, the Team will work with the Bureau of Rehabilitation Services to provide that level of support.


Person Centered Planning
Person centered planning, at its core, is about recognizing that people with mental illnesses generally want the exact same things in life as ALL people.  People want to thrive, not just survive.  Person centered planning is a collaborative process resulting in a recovery oriented treatment plan.  It is directed by consumers and produced in partnership with care providers and natural supporters and supports consumer preferences and a recovery orientation.  The primary focus of recovery planning is on what services the person desires and needs in order to establish and maintain a healthy and safe life in the community.


Trauma Informed Care
SMHA is committed to providing trauma informed care for all who are engaged in our person centered system of care.  This means that regardless of the service that is provided – housing  supports, employment services, for example – these services are provided in a manner that is welcoming and appropriate to the special needs of trauma survivors.

In trauma informed care, people are looked upon as a whole individual and are appreciated within the context in which they are living their life.  Rather that looking at a person from a diagnostic/symptom-only perspective, there comes a different approach in attempting to understand the person.  The goal is to return a sense of control and autonomy to the consumer-survivor.  This is done by all staff, from maintenance to administrative staff, by adhering to 5 principles:  Safety, Trustworthiness, Choice, Collaboration and Empowerment. 


Faith Initiative 
The SMHA Faith Initiative, spirituality, and recovery recognize the importance of interconnectedness between persons and the essential elements of hope and possibility.  Recovery encompasses an individual’s whole life, including mind, body, spirit and community.  The Southeastern Mental Health Authority strives to provide holistic care and support services to the individuals whom it serves.  The Faith Initiative is involved in enhancing spiritual and cultural training and education for staff and offering consultative and training opportunities for area faith leaders with respect to mental illness and addiction recovery.  Being sensitive and responsive to both the strengths and needs that individuals may have in relation to their own beliefs and spiritual journeys of healing and recovery, is essential to person-centered care.  By partnering together with communities of worship and faith leaders from all traditions, as well as with community pastoral care resources, SMHA seeks to enhance the avenues for offering professionally competent spiritual care when needed and to ensure a holistic approach to recovery services.

Dashboard Monitoring
SMHA has created and utilizes data Dashboards for each of its clinical programs.  These dashboards offer a monthly up to date “snapshot” view of statistical information such as number of Admissions and Discharges per month, number of Clients Served per Month, Employment data, Hospitalizations, Homelessness, Revenue Generation, Client Demographic/Ethnicity data, Community Integration Activities, and Productivity regarding hours spent in direct service to clients. 


Community Support Program (CSP) and Recovery Pathways (RP)

Services implemented through the Community Support Program/Recovery Pathways will be available to DMHAS clients with psychiatric or co-occurring psychiatric and addiction disorders who demonstrate a need for these services.  All services delivered must build upon and complement DMHAS’ focus on developing a recovery-oriented system of care that is responsive to the needs of persons served and shall be strength-based, recovery-oriented, and driven by the individual receiving services.

Community Support Program (CSP) consists of mental health and substance abuse rehabilitation services and supports necessary to assist individuals in achieving and maintaining the highest degree of independent functioning.  The service utilizes a team approach to provide intensive, rehabilitative community support, crisis intervention, group and individual psycho education, and skill building for activities of daily living and self management.  Case managers are moving from the traditional role of “doing things on behalf of the individual” to “teaching and coaching an individual to do things on their own.”


Recovery Pathways (RP) is a level of recovery support services intended for individuals who need minimum levels of routine or intermittent support.  The function of this level of care is to assist individuals in cultivating greater self management and problem solving skills, resolution of problematic situations, skill building towards improved self sufficiency and improving affiliations with social and community supports and assets toward self defined recovery goals.


“Around the Community” Initiative

The recommendations for community integration recognize that there are many challenges to building broader opportunities for integrated social participation for those with serious mental illnesses, i.e., basic transportation, stigma, motivation, but that normalizing social interactions is a vital step in the process of recovery.  In order to move forward in this area, SMHA has implemented a community integration initiative called “Around the Community.”  Each week community events and volunteer opportunities, taken from local newspaper listings, are compiled and forwarded to all SMHA programs.  Program staff encourage and assist clients with attending and participating in these community events.  SMHA’s goal is to expand on the numbers of people who take the chance of going beyond their comfort level by venturing into new territory, such as one of the many community events offered weekly in the Norwich and New London areas.


E-Family Program

In order to more effectively communicate with families about trainings, program services, new initiatives, etc., SMHA is collecting e-mail addresses from family members and caregivers.  Any family member wishing to have their name and e-mail address added to the E-Family Program list should contact Cindy McGrath at


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Content Last Modified on 3/24/2014 1:21:05 PM