Southwest Connecticut Mental Health System
Bridgeport Community-Based Services

Greater Bridgeport Community Mental Health Center

Greater Bridgeport Community Mental Health Center (GBCMHC)
(state operated)
1635 Central Avenue, Bridgeport, CT  06610
PH: 203-551-7400  FAX: 203-551-7479
Admissions Office:  203-551-7428
Inquire regarding services (8am to 4pm):  203-551-7507
Crisis Intervention: 1-800-586-9903 

Community-Based Services (state operated):

100 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, CT  06604
PH: 203-579-7300

(Catchment Area 3 and 4)
Serving the towns of Bridgeport, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Nichols, Southport, Stepney, Stevenson, Stratford, and Trumbull.

**No one will be denied service for inability to pay. Medicaid and Medicare accepted. Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) facilities will not discriminate in the provision of health care services to an individual. Click here for the full policy.**


The Hospital Services Division offers an array of services to meet the needs of individuals, 18 years of age and older with prolonged psychiatric and co-occurring illnesses, who require hospitalization due to acute exacerbation of their symptoms and for those requiring continued rehabilitation before returning to the community.  Patients are served in the following locations: The admissions unit (PICU I), the extended care unit (PICU II), and the Co-Occurring Treatment Unit (CTU).

Psychiatric Intensive Care Units (PICU) 42 beds:  The PICU 1 and PICU 2 each provide 21 beds for residents of Connecticut. Admissions to the psychiatric units are coordinated through a statewide Utilization Management process coordinated by the Office of the Commissioner. Both locked units are responsible for providing treatment for severely and acutely ill psychiatric patients who require a safe, supportive, highly structured hospital level of care. The treatment goals are developed in which the individual can be: stabilized, evaluated, rehabilitated, helped to accept the need for ongoing treatment, and assisted in regaining a level of functioning that will allow the person to be treated in a less restrictive environment or to return to community-based living.  PICU treatment staff work closely with community providers to ensure that a smooth transition to the community exists. PICU 1 provides assessment and stabilization, with the emphasis on community reentry. PICU 2, the extended care unit, focuses on rehabilitation with an emphasis on intense skills building needed for community reintegration.

Co-Occurring Treatment Unit (CTU) 20 beds: The Co-Occurring Treatment Unit is a 20 bed, locked inpatient psychiatric unit that provides treatment to individuals with co-occurring illness.  The criteria for admission are major mental illness and substance use within six months of admission. The mission of CTU is to provide assessment and psychiatric stabilization as well as education around the clients co-occurring illness. The program model focuses on the inpatient Integrated Dual Disorders Treatment (IDDT) evidence-based practice, focusing concurrently on both psychiatric and substance abuse diagnoses.  The treatment goals are similar to the PICU’s.


Community Outreach and Engagement Service (COES): The COES is the “front door” for community-based services in Bridgeport. The Unit coordinates streamlined access to the most appropriate and effective services within the Southwest Connecticut Mental Health System (SWCMHS).  COES provides community outreach, triage, diagnostic and evaluation services, homeless outreach services, short-term treatment services, employment services, peer support, and referrals to community providers.  COES is the initial point of entry into the SWCMHS, manages admission to all SWCMHS programs and is designed to quickly identify an individual’s needs and refer them to the appropriate level of care either within SWCMHS or in the community.  Services within COES include: 

Diagnostic and Evaluation Center (DEC) and Triage Services: The DEC provides a full range of assessments to determine an individual’s needs and makes recommendations for appropriate follow-up care.  The DEC provides short-term treatment services while a referral is processed to either a treatment team within the Southwest Connecticut Mental Health System or to a community provider.  The DEC has extended hours Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. as well as a crisis line available after hours and on weekends.  The Center’s primary functions include: clinical evaluation, psychiatric evaluation, psychological evaluation, health evaluation, TBI/ABI screening, employment/education screening, psychosocial assessment, brief treatment services, referral to clinical and primary health services.  

Triage Services: Triage services within the DEC provide intake services including initial screenings for COES services, entitlement and financial reviews, and referrals to community-based providers.  The goal is to compile knowledge regarding clinical needs, entitlements, medication programs, and community-based services to help promote rapid accessibility to recovery services both within SWCMHS and in the community. 

Crisis Intervention Team (CIT): The Crisis Intervention Team is a partnership program between the local police and the community provider network that offers training to law enforcement personnel and provides for a joint response to crisis in the community involving persons with behavioral health disorders.  The goal of CIT is to reduce the need for arrest in favor of referrals to appropriate treatment resources.  CIT has trained clinicians that work collaboratively with CIT trained officers to provide mental health evaluations and recommendations when responding to crisis calls.  

SWCMHS Regional Mobile Crisis Team

The Regional Mobile Crisis Intervention Team is available to provide intervention and support to adults (18 years and older) who are experiencing a behavioral health crisis in the comfort of their own home or other community location. The settings including:

  • Private homes/apartments,
  • Residential programs,
  • Social service agencies,
  • Hospitals, jails,
  • Universities,
  • Community offices, etc.

The services offered include:

  • Crisis Intervention and or assistance in managing difficult situations,
  • Crisis assessments and evaluations,
  • Problem solving and coping strategies,
  • Crisis prevention planning,
  • Referrals to other local services.


The Mobile Crisis Intervention Team is available for face-to-face outreaches Monday to Friday between the hours of 8:00am and 4:30pm


To access mobile crisis services, call 203‐358‐8500 Or 800‐586‐9903. There is no charge for this service.


Those needing assistance after hours, on weekends or holidays should contact 211 or 988.


Those experiencing a life-threatening emergency must call 911 or seek immediate assistance at a local hospital emergency department.

Homeless Outreach Team (HOT): The Homeless Outreach Team (HOT) is a program designed to offer mental health and substance abuse services to individuals in Bridgeport and the surrounding towns who are homeless.  Everyday, staff from HOT go to local shelters, bus stations, train stations, parks, soup kitchens, and other locations to provide assistance and support to homeless individuals.  Services that HOT provides includes: A “Drop-In” center where people can come have a cup of coffee or some food, staff who can help with medication management, an Employment Specialist who can help individuals find and keep a job, staff who can help clients get insurance, outreach workers who provide services in the community and can help with filling out housing applications or make referrals to shelters.

Community Services division (on-going services) (CSD)

Ongoing community-based services at SWCMHS are provided by a number of multi-disciplinary treatment teams. Core clinical services, offered by all of these teams, include: psychopharmacology, assessment, case management, individual, group and family psychotherapy, and psychoeducation. Also available to all teams are evidence based groups such as Illness Management and Recovery (IMR), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and Integrated Dual Disorder Treatment (IDDT). Each team includes an RN who assists consumers with wellness activities and to connect to primary care in the community. SWCMHS Rehabilitation Services are fully integrated into the clinical programs.

Services in Bridgeport are organized around three levels of care:

      • Community Support Program
      • Clinical Services with Recovery Pathways
      • Medication Clinic

Community Support Program (CSP): CSP is targeted to individuals who need the most intense level of community-based care. The program utilizes a team approach to provide intensive, rehabilitative community support, crisis intervention, individual and group skill-building, also known as recovery education.  The majority of the interventions are community-based, delivered in the individual’s home, neighborhood or community, which enables the team to become intimately familiar with the individual’s surroundings, strengths and challenges, within the context of their environment.  The desired outcome is to assist individuals toward an independent, enriched life based on their own choices and preferences.

Clinical Services (CS) with Recovery Pathways (RP): Bridgeport Clinical Services are designed for individuals who have a range of clinical needs but tend to require less intensive case management and community-based skills building. Consumers served by Clinical Services work with a licensed clinician who assists them to develop and implement a person-centered, coordinated recovery plan. These clinicians also provide a full range of individual, group and family therapies.

CS consumers have access to Recovery Pathways (RP) workers. RP staff offer traditional case management, as well as skills training (e.g. money management). RP support tends to be more intermittent and generally ranges from 1-3 hours per month. The function of this level of support is to assist individuals in cultivating greater independence in community living by use of problem solving skills, building towards improved self sufficiency and improving social networks within their own environment. Life skills seminars will be offered to assist individuals toward goals and objectives of independent living in accordance with the consumer’s specific recovery goals and objectives.

SWCMHS Clinical Services have additional capacities:

Hispanic Services: For monolingual Spanish-speaking clients. CS is able to offer services delivered by a team of Spanish speaking providers.  Hispanic Services have active linkages to culturally sensitive agencies in the Bridgeport area.

Deaf or Hard of Hearing Services:  Deaf of Hard of Hearing Service is a specialty service that is available within the Clinical Services Division of SWCMHS and is available at both the Bridgeport and Stamford locations.  This service provides culturally and linguistically accessible mental health treatment for persons who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.  All psychiatric services, case management, group and individual therapy are provided within the Clinical Services. Direct staff include; a clinician who is deaf and uses American Sign Language along with an Interpreter on site. Both can assist individuals to access sign language interpreters for treatment related services. 

Medication Clinic Service (MCS): The Medication Clinic is available for individuals who have achieved significant stability and are interested primarily in psychopharmacology services. Consumers in MCS require only periodic appointments with their psychiatrist and/or clinician.  The MCS primarily provides psychiatric medication, nursing services, supportive counseling provided by a clinician, supported employment, and peer services.  Case management services such as assistance with housing, entitlements or money management are available as needed. Individuals in the MCS typically come in for services less frequently and may be provided with assistance and referrals to access community mental health providers.

In addition to the community-based programs described above, SWCMHS offers three specialty programs in Bridgeport:

      • Young Adult Services
      • Forensic Services
      • Care Management
Young Adult Services (YAS): The Young Adult Services (YAS) program is designed to provide age appropriate, clinical and residential support services to young adults with behavioral health disorders between the ages of 18-25, providing intensive recovery oriented services that take into account developmental processes, the impact of traumas, and family issues.  YAS provides a wide range of services including clinical, employment, educational and rehabilitative support.  YAS is designed to prevent these consumers from being “lifelong members” of the mental health service systems.  Persons referred for services come through the Southwest Connecticut Mental Health System Community Outreach and Engagement Service or through the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Office of the Commissioner’s central referral process.  In both instances, these are usually youth who have been in residential treatment through the Department of Children and Families, in foster care, and/or in the juvenile justice system.  YAS services include:
      • Intensive Community Supports
      • Clinical Services
      • Residential Supports
      • Community Support Program
      • Educational Services
      • Vocational Services
      • Psychiatric/Medication Services
      • Social Rehabilitation

Forensic Services: The Forensic Team evaluates individuals who have been arrested (and who have mental health issues) usually for minor crimes, and assists the court in diverting them from purposeless incarceration.  The Team links persons in prison to appropriate mental health services, provides regular training to police, and assists other outpatient staff when consumers they serve are arrested.  The Forensic team is made up of several components:

  • Forensic case management that is oriented towards collaboration with criminal justice agencies (including concrete services, nursing, psychiatric, supported employment and other Evidence-Based Practices),
  • Connecticut Offender Reentry Project (CORP) which assists offenders who are transitioning from prison to the community
  • Court Diversion which advocates for alternatives to incarceration,
  • Liaison services to DOC, Whiting Forensics, and CVH
  • ASIST programwhich provides skill building and advocacy for people referred by the courts to the Bridgeport AIC office
  • Outpatient restorations to competency
  • PSRB community supervision and clinical services.

Care Management Team (CMT): The Care Management Team provides services to individuals who are receiving residential support and case management services from contracted community residential providers.  For example, people living in group homes, supervised housing and supported housing from agencies such as Mental Health Association (MHA), Recovery Network of Programs (RNP), Homestead, etc.  The CMT provides psychiatric medication, psychotherapy, and crisis intervention services.


Transitional Residence Program (TRP): TRP provides short-term housing for homeless individuals, incorporating rehabilitative programming for up to 20 consumers. TRP is an open residential program that provides supported living services, including medication monitoring, 24 hours a day until the consumer is ready for community re-entry.  TRP also provides skill building groups, outings in the community, visiting hours for family and friends, three meals a day, and laundry facilities. TRP staff work collaboratively with all services within the Community Services Division in an effort to support the consumer to get back into housing in their community.


Rehabilitation Services (RS): Rehabilitation Services are integrated throughout all programs and service locations, available to any consumer who is interested in the service. The RS division includes Supported Employment, Supported Education, Life Skills Training, and Peer Support services. Additionally, RS is overseeing the conversion of traditional Case Management and ACT programs to Community Support and Recovery Pathways (see page 4). These services are provided within the context of partnership, coaching, skill training, social network building, health maintenance, and the provision of assistance to attain an enriched living experience toward individual recovery. 

Supported Employment (SE):  Supported Employment is an Evidence-Based Practice provided to any consumer expressing an interest in finding or maintaining competitive employment.  Employment Specialists are embedded on the treatment teams and include both private sector and state employees who are committed to supporting individuals as they pursue their vocational goals.

Supported Education Services: The Resource Education Center (REC) provides Supported Education (SEd) services to any consumer expressing an interest in pursuing their educational goals.  SEd includes services for G.E.D., high school equivalency, post-secondary, education enrichment.

LIFE Skills Training: The Learn Independence to Feel Empowered (LIFE) Skills Program is designed for individuals who would like to learn skills to help them become more independent and lead enriched, satisfying lives in their communities.  Skills taught include: money management, grocery shopping, cooking, maintaining a safe living environment, how to participate effectively in the recovery planning process, how to access community resources, and many more.

Peer Support Services: SWCMHS strongly believes that individuals with their own lived experiences (Peers) are a critical resource for people in recovery.  Peer services include:

  • Recovery Coaches:  Recovery Coaches establish helping relationship with consumers based on mutuality, strengths, and shared learning. This unique relationship offers a different kind of growth opportunity for both the consumer and the peer. Not only do the Recovery Coaches bring their own life experience, education, and previous work history to the job, they have received training on the peer support discipline and how to provide that service in an integrated team.
  • Recovery Educators:  The Recovery Educators at the SWCMHS are a specially trained staff who are self-identified people with a lived experience (a.k.a. a person in recovery). They facilitate peer-led courses to people in recovery from mental illness and addiction disorders in Bridgeport, Stamford and Norwalk on an ongoing basis. The programs: WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan), Pathways to Recovery and the Peer Employment Training (PET) course are all strength-based, empowering, and recovery-oriented. While each program is structured around a specific curriculum, it is the experiences of the students, brought out in dynamic, inter-active, teaching formats that generate much of the learning which, oftentimes, has a transforming effect on the participants (consumers).
  • Stipend Trainee Programs:  This program, which has a strong foundation in skill-building methodology, offers a unique opportunity for trainees who are consumers within SWCMHS to learn skills relative to peer support, employment, community living, interpersonal skills, computer skills, and coping skills.  Trainees learn how to perform a wide range of tasks to assist consumers in regaining independence in their own lives and in their own recovery.  Trainees also help support consumers to get reconnected with the resources available to them in their community.  Trainees mutually assist people in the understanding of recovery, wellness principles, practices and pathways which include: Hope, Choice, Empowerment, Recovery Culture and Spirituality.  Trainees may work in any of the following capacities:
  • Greeters:  Responsible for welcoming consumers and visitors to the building, sharing and relaying information relative to daily programming with consumers and staff.
  • Peers Reaching Out (PROs):  Provide peer support services to consumers, co-lead groups, and assist rehab staff on inpatient units.
  • Peers Utilizing Skills for Healing (PUSH): Assist with the identification and implementation of community based outings and special events for consumers.
  • Warmline Operator: Accept calls from peers, assist and support individuals with non-emergency issues, provide information on community resources, listen to callers in a respectful and non-judgmental manner.
Return to:  SWCMHS