Coordinated Access to Care from the Hospital Emergency Departments

Mental illness and addictions are prevalent among frequent users of Emergency Departments, who use a disporportionately large number of acute care resources, potentially because they do not have adequate access to community care resources to support their needs. Emerging evidence suggests that brief case management interventions are effective in connecting these patients to community-based care, and thus reduce visits to the Emergency Departments. The CATCH-ED program is an intervention designed to connect frequent users of mental health and addictions services in Emegency Departments in downtown Toronto to community-based health services and other social services and support. The goal of the program is to improve access to community-based care for people who frequently use Emergency Departments to meet their mental health, addiction and broader health care needs.

Our team leads the economic evaluation in this project, which we will compare the health care costs of the intervention against the usual care using health care administrative data at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES).