Kentucky Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) Pilot Project Grant
In 2017, the General Assembly passed Kentucky's first Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) statute. Tim's Law, named for Tim Morton, a Lexington man with schizophrenia who was unable to acknowledge his own diagnosis and illness. During his lifetime, he was committed to inpatient treatment dozens of times, resisted attempts at outpatient treatment, and ultimately died in 2014 at age 56 from neglected health problems. Thanks to the efforts of his parents, advocacy groups, mental health agencies, and many others, Kentucky took a significant step toward stopping "the revolving door of jails, hospitals and homelessness with little benefit for such individuals." (Courier-Journal, 6/24/2016)
In July 2020, KY Department of Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities (DBHDID) received a federal SAMHSA grant to fund a pilot project for 192 Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) cases in Kentucky. The project coordinates the work of Community Mental Health Centers and state psychiatric hospitals in filing Tim's Law petitions and providing treatment to individuals under court order. The project is currently operating in the regions served by Central State Hospital (CSH) and Western State Hospital (WSH). In the CSH region, Communicare, Inc., and Seven Counties Services perform initial evaluations and provide community-based treatment. In the WSH region, Pennyroyal Center, River Valley Behavioral Health, LifeSkills and Four Rivers Behavioral Health provide these services. Working with University of Kentucky's College of Social Work, evaluation efforts are also funded by the grant, and part of a larger national review of AOT effectiveness.
The Pilot Project will be expanded to Eastern State Hospital region in FY2023 and Appalachian Regional Hospital in FY2024 with state general funds appropriated to DBHDID by the Kentucky General Assembly in the 2022 budget.
Our Kentucky AOT Grant Partners
Funding for this project was made possible by Grant Number 1H79SM082918-01 from SAMHSA. The views expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government