CTI is an empirically supported, time-limited case management model designed to prevent homelessness and other adverse outcomes in people with mental illness following discharge from hospitals, shelters, prisons and other institutions. CTI was originally developed and tested by researchers and clinicians at Columbia University and New York State Psychiatric Institute with significant support from the National Institute of Mental Health and the New York State Office of Mental Health. The model is listed in the National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices and is currently being applied and tested in the US and abroad. Download a four-page handout here.
Reentry Planning for Offenders with Mental Disorders (Henry A. Dlugacz, ed.), recently published by the Civic Research Institute, includes a chapter by Jeffrey Draine and Dan Herman on the application of CTI for reentry from correctional settings. The book addresses both policy and practice issues related to maximizing the chances of successful outcomes among persons with mental illnesses following release from jail and prison.
Mental health workers and local officials from the Netherlands in met in March with researchers from Columbia University and several provider organizations involved with CTI implementation in NYC. Part of an ongoing collaboration between researchers and providers in the US and the Netherlands, this was the third visit to the city by Dutch providers interested in learning about CTI and other innovative services for homeless persons. A national CTI conference in the Netherlands is tentatively planned for November 2010. A link to the Netherlands CTI website is here. (photo by Eve Vagg)
The Center for Mental Health Services of SAMHSA has released its new RFA for fiscal year 2010 Mental Health Transformation Grants. The program aims “to foster adoption and implementation of permanent transformative changes in how public mental health services are organized, managed and delivered so that they are consumer-driven, recovery-oriented and supported through evidence-based and best practices.” For the first time, this RFA specifically identifies CTI as a key practice that applicants may request support for as part of programs designed to address one of SAMHSA’s current strategic initiatives–increasing the availability of services linked to safe and affordable permanent housing for individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness due to mental illness, substance use, HIV/AIDs or long term institutionalization in a nursing home, jail, or other facility.
Jeffrey Olivet and Sam Johnston (both from the Center for Social Innovation) and Dan Herman (Columbia University & New York State Psychiatric Institute) led a panel presentation at the 3rd Annual NIH Conference on the Science of Dissemination and Implementation held in Bethesda on March 15 and 16, 2010. The team described finding from their recently completed pilot study of web-based CTI training for social workers and other staff working in homelessness service settings. This study, a collaborative project carried out with support from NIMH, tested a virtual community of practice approach to supporting providers as they developed needed skills and specific plans to implement CTI in their organizations.
Project Hope, located in Charlotte, North Carolina has begun to implement CTI as part of a new initiative supported by the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Homelessness Prevention & Rapid Re-Housing Program, a short-term rental assistance program to help prevent and reduce homelessness. The new program, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, is compatible with CTI in its focus on helping individuals and families stabilize and maintain their housing with time-limited assistance, while developing long-term supportive connections in the community. Project Hope staff received training from the Center for Urban Community Services (CUCS). CUCS, a large direct service and training agency focused on applying innovative approaches to meeting the needs of homeless persons, is one of two organizations that provides training in the CTI model.
As we reported earlier in the year, New Mexico became the first state to provide dedicated funding for CTI through its public mental health system. We learned recently that two organizations, St. Elizabeth Shelter and The Life Link, both in Santa Fe, were awarded state contracts and have launched CTI programs. Both programs aim to help homeless persons transition from the streets into housing. The St. Elizabeth’s program, described in their recent newsletter, uses CTI with as part of a rapid-rehousing initiative for 27 formerly homeless persons with behavioral health disorders. According to Shane Lampman, program manager, the model “helps to quickly connect clients to available community resources… so that they can focus their energy on recovery and restoring their independence.”
CTI received significant attention in a cover story on homelessness and mental illness in the current issue of the APA Monitor, published monthly by the American Psychological Association. The article describes CTI, along with Housing First and other innovative approaches that can help reduce the problem of homelessness among persons with severe mental illness. The APA has also organized a presidential task force on homelessness whose report is expected to be released in January.