Providers, Chaplain pilot vectoring program to better assist community

  • Published
  • By Lauren Russell
  • 66th Air Base Group Public Affairs

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – Officials from the 66th Medical Squadron Mental Health Flight and the Installation Chapel team are piloting a new initiative to better support personnel here.

Mental Health providers and technicians are now administering a vectoring interview to personnel who visit the clinic seeking care.

The interview itself takes only minutes, and allows technicians to better gauge the care required, and, if needed, refer the individual to a helping agency better equipped to support them.

“When someone has the courage to seek help, we need to meet them where they are and help them see it through,” said Maj. John Blue Star, 66 MDS Mental Health Flight commander. “We want Hanscom Air Force Base to be the easiest place to get the exact care you need.”

The vectoring tool includes a dual-sided flyers for each helping agency. The customer-facing side includes basic information about the agency and steps to contact them. The provider-facing side includes more specific details, such as who is eligible or ineligible for said agency’s support, as well as special considerations and important phone numbers.

“This helps us connect individuals with the right singular or multiple agencies, and give them options based on what they want, need, or with whom they feel most comfortable,” said Blue Star.

He said his clinic has been receiving a huge increase in cases over the last few years. After collaborating with the Chapel team, they realized that a large portion of appointments made were for topics relating to relationships and stress management.

By referring them to Chapel personnel, individuals could receive care within 24 hours.

“When people are hurting, they need care as soon as possible,” said installation Chaplain (Maj.) Kimberly Hall. “This vectoring tool can eliminate the long wait for appointments and save valuable time, allowing us to better support our civilians, enlisted and officers here.”

Following the success of the pilot program, Blue Star and his team are working with additional helping agencies to create flyers for more programs and services. 

Mental Health providers hope to unveil an expanded vectoring tool in the coming months.

The new tool will work in conjunction with Connect to Care, an Air Force Material Command policy to streamline support for individuals seeking care that is slated to be fully implemented at Hanscom AFB by 2024.