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Bridge Program

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CONTACT:
Molly Everett, MS, LPC
Bridge Program Supervisor
700 University City Boulevard
Blacksburg, VA 24060
Office: (540) 267-3430, intra-agency extension 1242
Fax: (540) 759-7914
Cell: (540) 944-8008
Email: meverett@nrvcs.org

Bridge Program Office
Phone: 540-961-8380
FAX: 540-759-7914

The NRVCS Bridge Programs are jail diversion programs for court-involved individuals designed to divert individuals with mental illness and/or co-occurring substance abuse disorders away from the criminal justice system and into community-based treatment and services. The programs consist of Bridge, Jail Services, and the Montgomery County Behavioral Health Docket.

Bridge:

Who is eligible?
– Individuals with involvement in the criminal justice system who have mental illness and/or co-occurring substance use disorder;

– Individuals with pending legal charges;

– Individuals that may be sentenced into the program; or

– Individuals that may be ordered into treatment as a condition of probation

– Participants must be residents of Floyd County, Giles County, Montgomery County, Pulaski County, or Radford City, and their charges must be contained to the Courts in these same areas.

– Enrollment in the program must be as a condition of an individual’s bond, sentence, or condition of probation. Other participants are taken on case-by-case basis if appropriate

Note: Individuals who have already been sentenced to serve a jail term, or who have current or past charges that are sexual in nature, are not eligible.

All enrolled individuals must be invested in working on their own recovery.

How long does a participant receive services?
Participants commit to a minimum of twelve months of services. After the twelve month mark, a participant’s status can be reviewed for completion based on level of engagement and success avoiding negative interactions with the legal system. The start date is based on the date of enrollment in services regardless of case disposition or outcome.

What services are offered?
The Bridge Program is a transitional program that is meant to assist an individual
between the time he/she is released from jail to the time he/she is stable and able to
obtain ongoing services to meet his/her long-term needs.

The Bridge Program currently offers the following treatment options based on the individual’s need, level of participation and level of attendance:

  • Individual counseling (based on availability of clinician)
  • Group counseling
  • Psychiatric Services & Medication Management
  • Medication Assisted Treatment
  • Case Management
  • Peer Recovery Specialist services (Individual and Group)

Additional referrals can be made as needed to Mental Health Skill-Building, Assertive Community Treatment, and Substance Abuse specific treatments such as Partial-Hospitalization or Inpatient Residential as needed.

What can I do to get someone enrolled in the Bridge Program?
Contact the Bridge Program at the number listed above for more information. Bridge can contact the jail and request an opportunity for a clinician to screen candidates for the program that are currently being held in the New River Valley area. For individuals currently in the community, you may contact your attorney or probation officer to complete a referral.

If an individual is eligible to receive services from the Bridge program, the program’s supervisor or clinician will contact the referral source with a letter stating the outcome of the screening and the individual’s eligibility. Individuals must contact the Bridge program to set up initial intake within 48 hours of being notified of acceptance by their referral source, or within 48 hours of being released from jail.

Upon request, progress reports are sent to the Court, the defense attorney, the Commonwealth’s Attorney, any supervisory bodies (i.e. probation, pre-trial services, Department of Social Services), that describe the individual’s progress and participation in the program, and the results of any drug screening assessments.

Jail Services
Jail services are available at differing levels at our local jail facilities. At a minimum, services include psychiatric assessments and medication evaluations (conducted by psychiatric staff) for those inmates identified to need these interventions.

Jail services from NRVCS are provided at both the New River Valley Regional Jail and Montgomery County Jail.

NRVRJ provides forensic housing case management, clinical mental health monitoring, mental health counseling, peer recovery specialist services, group therapy, psychiatric medication management, and can provide limited medication assisted treatment with some individuals on a case-by-case basis.

The Montgomery County Jail has weekly mental health clinician visits as well as peer recovery specialist visits for both individual and group sessions. A psychiatrist is available once a month for services at MCJ.

Enrollment in either jail is self-referred by the individual requesting services from jail staff, or on recommendation of jail staff based on observed concerns for the safety and well-being of the individual.

Montgomery County Behavioral Health Docket:

The mission of the Montgomery County Behavioral Health Docket is to provide evidence-based mental health treatment with intensive judicial oversight and community supervision for individuals who meet diagnostic criteria for a serious mental illness. The Behavioral Health Docket will aim to decrease rates of recidivism, incarceration, and contact with the criminal justice system, improve treatment compliance, and increase healthy community connections.

Who is eligible?
Individuals are considered for this program when they have pending charges in Montgomery County. Consideration for the program is on the basis that the individual may have untreated or undiagnosed mental illness and/or substance use disorder that contributed to the attainment of such charges.

Referrals and Enrollment:
Individuals must be referred by their attorney directly to the docket. The docket team will review applications monthly, and the commonwealth attorney who works with them will communicate acceptance or denial to the individual’s defense attorney directly. The individual referred will be contacted for a preliminary screening by the case manager and/or the clinician working with the BH Docket.

How long is this program?
Participation in the program is voluntary and program length is determined by individual progress. The average time it should take to successfully complete the program is 12 months but can take longer depending on how an individual progresses through each program phase. There are 4 phases in the program: Orientation, Preparation, Stabilization, and Maintenance and Community Reintegration. Upon completion of all 4 phases, an individual will be eligible for graduation from the program which is recognized with a formal ceremony.

What services are offered?
Upon acceptance to the BH Docket, individuals must complete a comprehensive evaluation to determine appropriate services. As part of the program’s participation, the individual must be in therapy and continuously participate in case management as provided by NRVCS through the docket. Individuals are expected to participate in recommended treatment based on the comprehensive evaluation. If an individual successfully completes services, they may be expected to maintain full-time gainful employment, complete community service, or participate in an equivalent meaningful practice in their daily lives.

Services that may be offered in addition to the expected case management include:

  • Peer Recovery Specialist services
  • Group and/or Individual therapy
  • Mental Health Skill Building
  • Substance Abuse group therapies
  • Inpatient Residential Substance Abuse Treatment
  • Crisis Stabilization Services
  • Psychiatric Medication Management
  • Medication Assisted Treatment
  • Care Coordination