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Pima County, AZ Justice-Health Integration Project

Like many jurisdictions across the country, Pima County, Arizona faces challenges managing offender care and their successful re-entry into the community as service demands increase and budgets decrease. The Pima County Justice-Health Integration Initiative used NIEM to leverage participating stakeholder information systems, establishing a standard vocabulary so the agencies could share information and translate the content into the language of each system. NIEM’s extensibility enabled them to define medical and behavior health terminology used by stakeholder agencies. This exchange will promote discharge planning for offenders, improve the efficacy of community care, and subsequently reduce recidivism and associated expense to the community. This effort went live in August 2014 and will significantly reduce the number of labor intensive, manual phone calls between medical staff (Correct Care Solutions) at the Pima County Adult Detention Center (PCADC) and the Community Partnership of Southern Arizona (CPSA). The new process will automate the current manual system to determine an offender’s behavioral health treatment history with the regional behavioral health authority (RHBA). Completely automating the system will have a potential cost savings of $300,000 and 20,000 hours of personnel time per year. This system promotes the seamless provision of health services within the criminal justice system and the success of this project reflects a strong interagency partnership among government, non-profit, and private sector technology agencies.

Pima County Office of Behavioral Health
Best of NIEM Year