LA CROSSE, WI -

Three local counties are teaming up to provide better mental health care in Western Wisconsin.

La Crosse, Monroe, and Jackson counties are forming the Western Region Integrated Care Consortium. It's being made possible through a grant from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

That means from now on they won't be working as three different counties, but one unified effort when it comes to mental health and substance abuse.

They say it will give them an opportunity to expand, find deficiencies, and maximize resources.

"I think the dream that we all have as providers and consumers and family members is somehow get to a system where you can know what to expect, have a consistent set of services that are delivered regardless of which county you live in," said Matt Strittmater from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

The new program is one of only two pilot programs in the state.