Thanks to a three-year grant from Preston Hollow’s Communities Foundation of Texas, the way Dallas Fire-Rescue and the Dallas Police Department respond to behavioral health emergencies may change dramatically.

The organizations will receive up to $1.5 million from the W.W. Caruth, Jr. Foundation Grant to train and partner paramedics, police officer and mental health experts respond as a team to these crises. The fire and police departments collaborated with Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute to establish a program that improves the response to these calls while utilizing city resources.

“Historically, paramedics and police officers have had limited tools available to help them manage patients experiencing behavioral health emergencies. This grant could dramatically change the response to these patients while decreasing the use of other EMS, police and hospital emergency department services,” a City of Dallas press release reads.

A pilot program is slated to begin in 2017.

The Communities Foundation of Texas also organizes North Texas Giving Day at NorthPark Center, which raised $37 million for local nonprofits this year.

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