Emergency COVID-19 Project

Members of the UW Population Health Institute Evaluation Research Group are providing training and assistance to ensure compliance with federal reporting requirements, provide ongoing monitoring of the implementation of the strategies, and provide evaluation support to document program activities.

The Emergency COVID-19 Project is a 16-month project funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and administered by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS). The Emergency COVID-19 Project provides a variety of direct treatment services to individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with Serious Mental Illness (SMI), Substance Use Disorder (SUD), and/or with co-occurring SMI and SUD. The Emergency COVID-19 Project also provides direct treatment supports to individuals with needs less than SMI, as well as for health care professionals, including first responders and professionals working to support others through this crisis. The Emergency COVID-19 Project incorporates a variety of strategies to provide treatment and support and is implemented at eight high-need sites throughout Wisconsin including: Brown, Dane, Kenosha, Milwaukee, Racine, Rock and Waukesha counties, and Mental Health America of Wisconsin. The eight sites implement strategies based on identified local needs, and which are implemented with the goals of supporting the provision of direct services to individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and providing behavioral health support to Wisconsin’s first responders who are on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic. Strategies implemented include:

  • Residential treatment programs
  • Recovery housing/safe housing
  • Expansion of crisis counseling for under-served populations
  • Supportive services for individuals experiencing homelessness at higher risk for contracting COVID-19
  • Behavioral health supports for youth and parents in foster care settings
  • Medical injections for clients with SMI
  • Mobile crisis supports
  • Certified Peer Specialist access
  • Critical Incident Stress Debriefing for health professionals
  • Support for older adults experiencing increased isolation due to the impact of COVID-19
  • Certified outpatient clinic for first responders

See more information on current projects of the Evaluation Group.