RHD has partnered with the Allegheny County Department of Human Services to launch A-Team, a pilot program using the Alternative Response Model of mobile crisis intervention. This program aims to enhance the current emergency response system for 911 calls.

The 911 system is essential for community safety and well-being, providing three main emergency services: police, fire, and medical. However, police most frequently respond to behavioral health 911 calls, even though they usually lack the specialized training of social workers or behavioral health professionals. This can strain police resources and increase the likelihood of a forceful response to behavioral or mental health crises.

To address this, RHD’s A-Team will serve as a fourth emergency service, complementing the existing system. Our mission is to quickly assist individuals in crisis, guiding them towards the best outcomes while easing the burden on other emergency services. Through compassionate care and strategic coordination, A-Team aims to reduce hospitalizations and incarcerations related to mental and behavioral health issues.

The A-Team consists of mental and behavioral health professionals with diverse backgrounds and specialized expertise. Each member undergoes extensive training in crisis intervention and de-escalation, preparing them to handle challenging situations effectively. They bring a wide range of skills, including therapeutic techniques, conflict resolution, cultural competency, and collaboration with other stakeholders. Together, the A-Team is dedicated to providing comprehensive support to individuals in crisis, promoting positive outcomes and community well-being.

Program Start Year

  • 2024

Service Areas


  • Jon Chillinsky, MDiv - Assistant Director

Contact Information