Nantucket Cottage Hospital represents the acute safety net for patients who require psychiatric evaluation and stabilization in our Emergency Department, as well as continued observation and treatment.
Every patient who presents to our Emergency Department with behavioral health or substance abuse issues are provided evaluations by qualified, experienced staff members, together with Fairwinds clinicians. Evaluation continues daily until a safe disposition is determined. If a patient requires further hospitalization in a licensed mental health or substance abuse facility, our social workers and ER staff connect with such facilities on the mainland and coordinate bed placements, insurance approvals and transportation arrangements.
As of January 3, 2023, Nantucket Cottage Hospital and Fairwinds launched a new integrated system of community-wide mental health crisis response. The collaboration, which has been in development for months, grew out of the work of the Nantucket Community Behavioral Health Initiative which identified the fragmented system of mental health crisis response to be one of the key gaps in its 2021 assessment of behavioral health systems on the island.
The new island-wide mental health crisis number is 508-221-3315. Fairwinds, which has been designated the Community Behavioral Health Center and Crisis Responder for Nantucket by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, will respond to crisis calls 24/7 365 days a year. In addition to addressing crisis calls in the community and in the schools, Fairwinds clinicians will provide crisis evaluations in the hospital emergency department and provide consultation for treatment of patients waiting for discharge to on-island outpatient services or transfer to an off-island in-patient facility.
“When the state came up with its new approach to community crisis response we were well positioned because we were already at the table working collaboratively to make it better,” said Amy Lee, President of Nantucket Cottage Hospital. “When Fairwinds applied for and was selected to be the CBHC (Community Behavioral Health Center) for Nantucket – which was a big step and a huge commitment – it just made sense for the community for it to be one integrated system that we all commit to support.”
While the state’s guidelines and contracts only apply to Mass Health patients, the new system on Nantucket will be “payer blind” giving every person access to the same system regardless of insurance status. Patients who need in-patient care will get placement in an off-island facility through Mass General Brigham’s central access program which provides a single team to manage all behavioral health inpatient placement throughout the MGB system and beyond.
Jason Bridges, Executive Director of Fairwinds, added “This collaboration between Fairwinds and the Nantucket Cottage Hospital will provide better care for those in crisis while significantly improving the overall behavioral health care for our island. Driving towards one integrated system with first responders, the schools, human services organizations, and the broader community will put people first and improve our overall level of care and well-being.”
National Alliance on Mental Illness | Cape Cod & The Islands Chapter, provides free of charge educational and support programs and services for families and friends of those with mental illness as well as for those individuals with mental illness themselves throughout Cape Cod and the islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. NAMI on Nantucket manages the David Glidden Memorial Travel Fund, which provides needed financial travel assistance to families whose behavioral health treatment necessitates off-island services. This fund helps relieve emotional and financial stress for families and individuals in this critical time.
Nantucket Behavioral Health Advisory Group, whose purpose is to work towards an effective and collaborative behavioral health system on Nantucket and maintains a comprehensive community resource page.
Call us at (508) 228-3955 for Gosnold on Nantucket
Call (508) 228-2689 for Dr. Robertson
Nantucket Cottage HospitalGet Directions
57 Prospect Street
Nantucket, MA 02554