Persons with mental illness are booked into jails at disproportionate rates relative to the general population without mental illness. As a result, county jails have become the nation’s largest providers of inpatient and residential psychiatric care. Often, these persons are booked into jails as a result of treatment non-compliance. This problem becomes increasingly inhumane, expensive, and dangerous, as an individual’s illnesses remain unidentified and untreated within the jail system.
Jail diversion programs can be quite effective, but require complex workflows and information sharing. Typically, jail diversion programs require days, weeks, or even months to accomplish a single diversion. Information must be shared by telephone, fax, or paper processes.