North Carolina Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources and Treatment (NC START)

North Carolina Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources and Treatment (NC START) is a statewide community crisis prevention and intervention program for individuals age 6 and above with intellectual/developmental disability and co-occurring complex behavioral and/or mental health needs. START crisis prevention and intervention services are provided through clinical systemic consultation, training, education, therapeutic respite, crisis response and therapeutic couching. The model works to improve the lives of the individuals served and their families by providing services and supports using a person-centered, positive, multidisciplinary, cost-effective, systemic and evidence-informed approach.

The START program model was implemented in 1988 by Dr. Joan Beasley and her team. The initiative originated in the Center for START Services at the Institute on Disability/UCED at the University of New Hampshire. In 2016 the START model was identified as best practice by the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine.

There are three START teams statewide, one team for each region of the state:
NC START West Asheville Kannapolis/Concord: 888-974-2937; Referrals: 888-974-2937
NC START Central Durham: 919-865-8730, 800-662-7119 x8730; Referrals: 919-865-8730
NC START East New Bern Wilmington: 888-962-3782; Referrals: 252-571-9039

Click here to view the NC START Overview by Dr. Jill Hinton - (Video, External link).

Resource Centers

Each START team has one Resource Center to provide therapeutic crisis respite and crisis prevention respite to eligible adults ages 18 and up. Each Resource Center has 4 beds: 2 planned respite beds and 2 crisis respite beds. Planned therapeutic respite is available in the Resource Centers for eligible adults living in unlicensed residential settings and receiving START services. Crisis therapeutic respite is available in the Resource Centers for all adults when clinically indicated and receiving START services.

START Services for Children

Children are eligible to receive Therapeutic Coaching in their home. Therapeutic Coaching aims to identify strengths and vulnerabilities of a support system, and work alongside individuals, families and care providers to promote growth and overall wellbeing. Therapeutic Coaching is provided in both a planned and crisis capacity.

Making a Referral

Referrals to NC START can be made by anyone known to the individual, with an understanding of the individual’s status and treatment, support and behavioral history, and the applicable consent for referral.

Referrals for adults can be made at any time to the appropriate NC START Team; contact information can be found above, for each START team.

Referrals for children not experiencing a crisis at the time of referral should be made to the LME-MCO during business hours.
After business hours for children in crisis contact the LME-MCO crisis line, click here LME-MCO contact information.

Associated Files