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(565 results for Assertive Community Treatment)

Assertive Community Treatment

Severe mental illness frequently impacts relationships, physical health, employment, daytime activities, living conditions and also has a high rate of co-occurring substance abuse. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is an evidence-based practice for adults age 18 and older with severe mental illness who are at the highest risk of homelessness, psychiatric crisis, hospitalization and run-ins with the law. First implemented in 1972, ACT is a multidisciplinary team approach with assertive outreach in the community. Unlike other community-based programs such as case management, ACT does not link clients to mental health, housing, rehabilitation agencies or services, but provides these services directly. To qualify, an individual has to suffer from debilitating symptoms of mental illness impairing the ability to function on a daily basis. Clients with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorders are also treated through ACT programs.

The Goals of ACT

– Lessens or eliminates the debilitating symptoms of mental illness
– Minimizes or prevents recurrent acute episodes of mental illness
– Fulfills the client’s basic needs and enhances quality of life
– Improves functioning in the client’s social and employment roles
– Enhances a client’s ability to live independently in his or her own community
– Lessens the family burden of providing care

Key Elements of ACT

– Services are provided directly by the ACT team rather than brokered as in case management, however, some specialty services may be coordinated by the ACT team
– Team members share responsibility for all clients served by the team
– Staff to client ratio is small (ideally 1:10)
– No time limit is imposed on how long a client can be served by the team
– Services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
– Interventions are provided in the location where the need occurs, rather than in the clinic or office (e.g. client’s home)
– Treatment and services are comprehensive and flexible
– Treatment and supports are individualized
– Team members are assertive in engaging individuals in treatment

The Efficacy of ACT

ACT is one of the most widely researched evidence-based practices in behavioral healthcare for people with severe mental illness. Many outcome studies have been conducted in Europe and the U.S, covering the full age continuum – from clients in their late teens – to elderly adults. The consistent, caring and person-centered relationships integral to ACT have a positive effect on outcomes and quality of life. People receiving ACT services tend to utilize fewer intensive, high-cost services such as emergency department visits, psychiatric crisis services and psychiatric hospitalizations. They also attain independent living more often and have higher rates of treatment retention.

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More on Assertive Community Treatment

Severe mental illness frequently impacts relationships, physical health, employment, daytime activities, living conditions and also has a high rate of co-occurring substance abuse. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is an evidence-based practice for adults age 18 and older with severe mental illness who are at the highest risk of homelessness, psychiatric crisis, hospitalization and run-ins with the law. First implemented in 1972, ACT is a multidisciplinary team approach with assertive outreach in the community. Unlike other community-based programs such as case management, ACT does not link clients to mental health, housing, rehabilitation agencies or services, but provides these services directly. To qualify, an individual has to suffer from debilitating symptoms of mental illness impairing the ability to function on a daily basis. Clients with co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorders are also treated through ACT programs.

The Goals of ACT

– Lessens or eliminates the debilitating symptoms of mental illness
– Minimizes or prevents recurrent acute episodes of mental illness
– Fulfills the client’s basic needs and enhances quality of life
– Improves functioning in the client’s social and employment roles
– Enhances a client’s ability to live independently in his or her own community
– Lessens the family burden of providing care

Key Elements of ACT

– Services are provided directly by the ACT team rather than brokered as in case management, however, some specialty services may be coordinated by the ACT team
– Team members share responsibility for all clients served by the team
– Staff to client ratio is small (ideally 1:10)
– No time limit is imposed on how long a client can be served by the team
– Services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
– Interventions are provided in the location where the need occurs, rather than in the clinic or office (e.g. client’s home)
– Treatment and services are comprehensive and flexible
– Treatment and supports are individualized
– Team members are assertive in engaging individuals in treatment

The Efficacy of ACT

ACT is one of the most widely researched evidence-based practices in behavioral healthcare for people with severe mental illness. Many outcome studies have been conducted in Europe and the U.S, covering the full age continuum – from clients in their late teens – to elderly adults. The consistent, caring and person-centered relationships integral to ACT have a positive effect on outcomes and quality of life. People receiving ACT services tend to utilize fewer intensive, high-cost services such as emergency department visits, psychiatric crisis services and psychiatric hospitalizations. They also attain independent living more often and have higher rates of treatment retention.

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