ATLANTA -- "One we're going to see up here is near Woodruff Park," Dr. Elizabeth Frye says of her next patient.
She's part of amobile team of mental health professionals, whoeach day serve metro Atlanta's mentally ill, wherever they may be.
Dr. Frye sits with Stephanie under the overhang of a downtown building, the wind whipping and the rain pouring around them.
"How are things going with your medication?" Dr. Frye asks.
"Things are going much better with my medication," Stephanie responds.
This is not a typical doctor's appointment or therapy session. Stephanie is Dr. Frye's patient. She has battled mental illness and homelessness for years.
"We have people who are hurting right under our noses. You know what I'm saying?" Stephanie says. Dr. Frye nods. "There are times I'm challenged mentally, even when I'm on my medication, even when I'm keeping my rules, even when I'm going to my individual therapy."
Dr. Frye is part of an ACT team, Assertive Community treatment, from Grady's Mental Health services. Across the country, ACT teams are serving a population that would otherwise go without help.
Brenda Newcom, Program Manager for Adult Outpatient Programs says, "We're able to come in when they're in a crisis in their lives and stabilize."
For 25 year old Phillip Haynes, an Alpharetta man who suffers from bipolar disorder and delusions and is now homeless, an ACT team may be able to help. We connected Phillip's mother Denise with the team so she could refer him, and provide his history.
In explaining how the referral process works, Newcom says that "If that is determined that it's a fit, then we'll immediately schedule to go out and start engaging, outreaching the individual."
It is unorthodox, the days spent driving, searching for clients -- meeting wherever they can.
Stephanie says, "Things have definitely gotten better. I'm making some good decisions."
But Stephanie is proof that reaching out saves lives.
"I remember those days I wanted to commit suicide, but then I would talk to some and I would find myself changing my mind."
Under the overhang of a downtown building, a woman knows she is not alone.
"I had issues with abandonment and trust,"Stephanie says. "But you guys have always been there consistently in my life."