Living with a severe and persistent mental illness, like schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder, can pose challenges. Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) services are here to address all of your mental health needs so you can stay out of the hospital and live the life you want to live.
What do ACT Services do?
When you have a serious mental illness, mental health crisis situations can cause frequent visits to the hospital. ACT helps clients get all the resources they need while living the life they want to live in their community.
“ACT services are client-centered and all-inclusive, meaning we essentially provide all their mental health services within the team,” says ACT Program Manager Sara. “Our team consists of Therapists, Employment Specialists, Peer Recovery Specialists, RNs, MICD Specialists, and a Psychiatrist.”
Staff work together and meet with their clients regularly. This consistency helps clients meet their mental health, physical health, education, employment, housing, and socialization goals.
“ACT differs from most case management services in that clients are seen on a more regular basis,” comments Rachel, Peer Recovery Specialist. Each client is visited by a member of the ACT team between 1 and 7 days a week. “Through frequency, consistency, and continuity, we can build unique and meaningful relationships.”
“The ACT team helps clients receiving services to achieve more independence, stay out of the hospital, find jobs, and live in the housing of their choice,” says Sara.
Who Does ACT Help?
ACT helps individuals in Dakota and Ramsey Counties with a severe and persistent mental illness: typically a diagnosis of schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder. Individuals have significant functional impairment, frequently use the Emergency Department, or have frequent hospitalizations.
Individuals can be referred to ACT services by a psychiatrist, therapist, case manager, or another provider. You can learn more about eligibility here.
What’s it Like Being a Part of the ACT Team?
ACT team members are currently meeting with clients virtually or in-person with social distancing and masks. “We see some individuals every day to ensure they are taking their medication but also coach coping skills and provide support with navigating life,” says Jack, Lead Case Manager.
There is no typical day on the ACT team. “Because case managers see an average of 5 to 8 clients a day, our days are as varied and diverse as our clients and the goals they are working on,” says Rachel.
“The nature of our services require flexibility, teamwork, and creativity,” says Sara. “I see the staff working together and supporting clients and each other. They are creative, flexible, and amazing in finding ways to connect with clients and meet each individual’s needs.”
Still curious? Learn more about Guild’s ACT services.