Who Can Write a (5150) Hold
Humboldt County


The following classes of persons are designated as persons who may, upon probable cause, take, or caused to be taken, persons with a mental health disorder described in WIC 5150 into custody and place them into a psychiatric facility.

  • Peace officers exercising jurisdiction with either the County of Humboldt or any incorporated city within the County.

EFFECTIVE: Feb 01, 2020, the following professionals are required to complete the 5150 WRITING certification Training & Test if they desire to be eligible for 5150 writing privilege designation by the County Behavioral Health Director:

  • On duty Emergency Room physicians at any of the hospitals offering Emergency Room services in Humboldt County.
  • Licensed physicians offering Emergency Services at the K’ima:w Medical Center.
  • Community Psychiatrists who are certified by the Board of Medical Quality Assurance in the field of psychiatry.
  • And…The following on-duty staff members of the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services Behavioral Health Branch Department or on duty Contractors credentialed by the Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services Behavioral Health Branch Medical staff as directed by the Behavioral Health Branch Director and approved by the County Board of Supervisors:
    • Licensed physicians;
    • Licensed psychologists;
    • Licensed clinical social workers;
    • Licensed marriage, family & child counselors;
    • Nurse practitioners;
    • Registered nurses;
    • Licensed psychiatric technicians;
    • Licensed vocational nurses;

Evaluation Requests: Humboldt County Behavioral Health is a designated Psychiatric Health Facility, and the only 5150 receiving unit located within the North Coast Emergency Medical Services region.

Humboldt County is also fortunate to have a Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU). This is the 5150 receiving unit for the Behavioral Health Branch where individuals are assessed to determine if psychiatric hospitalization is required, or if the mental health consumer can be served utilizing less restrictive, lower level of care, usually home. Behavioral Health Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU) team members will make appropriate referrals for all individuals who do not require hospitalization. There is not a physician on the floor at all times, so individuals may have to wait until the next day to be assessed by a psychiatrist.

Humboldt County Behavioral Health Services include:

  • Same Day Services (SDS) = daytime emergency service, operating from 8am to 4pm, Monday through Friday, for assessment and linkage to services as needed.
  • The crisis line (707-445–7715) calls are received in this unit from 8am to 5pm Monday through Friday. Much like in an urgent care facility, however, no physician staffs this unit.
  • Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU), the 5150  receiving unit, is a (4) bed, locked unit, holding people for up to 23 hours to assess, stabilize, and plan a return to the community, or admit to Sempervirens (SV) or alternate out-of-county facility when necessary. The crisis line (707-445–7715) calls are received in this unit after hours and on weekends.
  • Sempervirens (SV) = a (16) bed, in-patient locked designated Psychiatric Health Facility, providing services for those on a 5150 hold, 24 hrs/7 days a week.
  • Mobile Intervention and Services Team= (MIST)

The Mobile Intervention and Services Team (MIST) will work specifically with people who are homeless and need help stabilizing their mental illness and securing services and assistance they need to avoid further problems. Humboldt County Behavioral Health staff join forces with officers from the Eureka Police Department (EPD) to coordinate in serving homeless people with severe mental illness.

One of the primary goals of the team is to specifically help homeless people who have frequent contact with both Eureka police and DHHS Behavioral Health staff. Mental Health staff will assist the person in the field, as well as in transition, if necessary, to DHHS’s Crisis Stabilization Unit or its hospital. With an earlier and integrated team response, individuals will receive needed care and treatment with the goal of avoiding further law enforcement intervention and psychiatric hospitalization

  • Rapid Re-Housing

Permanent Supportive Housing Humboldt Housing and Homeless Coalition (HHHC) has taken every opportunity from HUD to increase the community’s stock of Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH). When funded by HUD, this housing option requires the occupant to be low-income, disabled and chronically homeless. PSH can be funded by other sources, not just HUD, and DHHS Behavioral Health has a collaborative agreement for 15 units of PSH using the MHSA Housing Program that opened Fall 2015, known as Arcata Bay Crossing (ABC).

Arcata Bay Crossing (ABC), this development has 42 housing units total, including the 15 set aside for homeless people with serious mental illness. Persons that need the level of support provided by PSH will be eligible for placement into ABC.

Community Corrections Resource Center (CCRC) is a multidisciplinary center that provides jail custody and community-based services to County Probation Department offenders under AB109.