Mobile Response Team

a young girl in crisis hugging her headThe Starting Point Mobile Response Team (MRT) provides emergency crisis response 24/7, 365 days a year to youths in crisis or experiencing traumatic events in Nassau County. These can include anger issues, self injury, suicidal or homicidal thoughts or behavior, extreme conflict between parent and child, hearing or seeing things, depression or anxiety.

The MRT program was part of the Marjory Stoneman Douglass Act. The Act called for an emergency response team in every county in Florida with the ability to respond to a youth (age 25 or younger) in crisis within 60 minutes, anywhere in the state.

The MRT program began in March 2019 after receiving a grant from the state to help pay for the program. Since then, the MRT has responded to more than 175 calls in Nassau County. Of those, two-thirds were diverted from the Crisis Stabilization Unit because the intervention was followed by an appropriate level of care provided in outpatient settings. This means fewer youths had to be unnecessarily hospitalized.

The team responds to threats of suicide, substance abuse disorder issues, and other mental health crises. Typically, the call is initiated by school or law enforcement personnel via 911, which then contacts the team. The team responds to the crisis as does a member of law enforcement.

The team professionals have access to specific tools to assess the youth. They will meet and talk with the youth, the family and others in their support system. A licensed clinician decides if they should initiate the Baker Act or divert the individual to other services. The Baker Act provides individuals with emergency inpatient mental health services on an involuntary or voluntary basis for up to 72 hours.

If a youth is admitted under the Baker Act, the MRT will meet them at the hospital and work with them on a plan for follow-up care. Follow up care can include therapy, case management and medication, whatever is needed to wrap around the youth and their family.

For young people not hospitalized, the team follows up about 72 hours after the initial call, reaching out twice a day either in person or through texts or phone calls, to ensure that the care plan is being followed.

If you or someone you know is in need of the Mobile Response Team, please call 904-580-0529.