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BernCo Selected for National Data-Driven Justice Conference

09/07/2017

A team of diverse healthcare and criminal justice stakeholders from Bernalillo County has been selected to attend the National Data Driven Justice and Behavioral Health Design Institute this week in Rockville, Maryland. The three-day workshop focuses on the planning and implementation of data-sharing strategies to improve service delivery and health outcomes for individuals with complex physical health, behavioral health, criminal justice, and social service needs.

The Data Driven Justice project integrates data across systems to divert people with complex behavioral health disorders out of emergency rooms and jails into secure housing and community-based treatment. These individuals, who are often chronically ill and homeless, cycle through repeated encounters with law-enforcement, emergency responders, homeless services, and emergency hospital services at high cost to taxpayers. The goal of the project is to help identify people with the highest needs and provide targeted, appropriate services that address the root of their problems and produce better outcomes.

BernCo’s team includes representatives from the University of New Mexico, the Albuquerque Police Department, UNM Hospitals, Albuquerque Healthcare for the Homeless, the New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness and BernCo behavioral health, administrative and Metropolitan Detention Center staff.

“This institute is a valuable opportunity for us to develop strategies for smarter use of our healthcare and law enforcement resources,” Commissioner Maggie Hart Stebbins says. “When we identify high-need individuals who cycle in and out of jail and hospital ERs - and provide the help they really need - we can see better outcomes for the individual and our community as a whole.”

The conference is sponsored by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Association of Counties and the Laura and John Arnold Foundation. Travel and lodging expenses are paid for by the federal government.

Bernalillo County is one of 14 teams chosen for the institute after a competitive application process. For more information, visit https://www.datadrivenjustice.org/.

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