Hamilton County Sheriff's Office no longer transporting mental health patients
The Hamilton County Sheriff's Office is changing the way mental health patients are treated during a crisis.
Starting on Tuesday, the sheriff's office will have an ambulance transport patients to a facility for treatment.
Officials with the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office say they have never felt that using a patrol car was the best way to take care of someone during a mental health emergency. This is why they found medical professionals to help.
Legally, the sheriff's office has been responsible for transporting patients to facilities for treatment, which means they are restrained with handcuffs and put in the back of a patrol car.
Now, a company called AmeriMed EMS will be used to transport the patients.
“If my loved one was in a mental health crisis, it would not be my preference that they get put in handcuffs and put in a squad car when they've committed no crime,” said Elliot Mahaffey with the HCSO. “I don’t think it's lost on that person that the seat they are occupying was last occupied by a criminal.”
This change will not cost taxpayers or the sheriff's office. The bill will go to the patient's insurance company.