The COAST program is a program of St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton that provides services to people who reside in the City of Hamilton and are experiencing a crisis related to mental health and addictions. Mental Health Professionals (MHP) work as a team in a unique partnership with specially trained police officers of the Hamilton Police Service.
Intake and Triage
A MHP will respond to calls on the COAST crisis line and complete an intake assessment regarding the mental health concern. Support, recommendations, and a plan for intervention will be developed.
There are two ways COAST will respond for mobile visits which are triaged in a priority manner. COAST is a multidisciplinary team consisting of nurses, social workers, occupational therapists, crisis triage workers, and plain clothes police officers. Mobile visits will occur with the police officer and the mental health worker in an unmarked vehicle or two COAST staff in a co-response model. They will respond to a residence, workplace, school, or any safe location to complete a risk assessment and a mental status exam.
Individuals will be referred to community programs and agencies as needed. Ongoing bridging support by the telephone may also be provided to individuals, families, and caregivers as needed.