21/02/2024
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Funding for states, territories and tribes will help build local capacity.

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The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), today announced more than $200 million in new funding for states, territories and tribes to build local capacity for the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline and related crisis services.

Thanks to President Biden, we are finally and earnestly saying to Americans struggling with their mental health: Support is here! said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. Support is here in 988, the triple-digit Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, and this new funding reflects our commitment to strengthening the crisis-care system across our country so Americans can get the care they need. they need.

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The $200.15 million in new funding opportunities for 988 Lifeline include:

  • $177.35 million to US states and territories to: improve local response; improve the recruitment, hiring and training of 988 employees; implement additional technological and security measures to support infrastructure and effectively coordinate the crisis continuum; improve support and service for high-risk and underserved populations, including quality assurance and critical incident review; and develop and implement comprehensive communication plans,
  • $17.8 million to federally recognized Indian tribes, tribal organizations and urban Indian organizations to: enhance response, ensure access to culturally competent 988 crisis center support, enhance integration and support, and ensure navigation and follow-up assistance, e
  • $5 million for 988 Lifeline crisis follow-up programs that will enable call centers to provide systematic follow-up of suicidal individuals who go to the 988 Lifeline, better coordination of crisis stabilization, including with 911 and call providers emergency services, reduction of unnecessary police involvement and improved connections for high-risk populations.

The Biden-Harris administration has made an unprecedented investment of nearly $1 billion to support the 988 Lifeline, including an initial $432 million to support the transition to 988 in July 2022, to increase crisis center capacity and provide special services, including a sub-network for Spanish speakers. Additional funding for 988 Lifeline was provided by the American Rescue Plan, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, and the Federal FY 2023 Consolidated Appropriations Act. Prior to this investment, Lifeline, which had existed since 2005 as the 1-800 number, had long been underfunded and under-resourced.

Timely investments in the 988 Lifeline at the federal, state and local levels are helping ensure that many more people in crisis get the help and support they need, said Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, Ph.D., HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and leader of SAMHSA. Data continues to show an increase in overall calls, texts and chats over the previous year, and at the same time, response rates are improving significantly, meaning more people are getting help, and they’re getting it faster , which is crucial for someone in crisis

Studies have shown that after talking to a qualified crisis counselor, most 988 Lifeline calls are much more likely to feel less depressed, less suicidal, less overwhelmed, and more hopeful.

In 2021, according to SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 4.8 percent of adults ages 18 and older (about 12.3 million people) experienced serious suicidal thoughts, and among teenagers aged 12 to 17, 12.7% (about 3.3 million people) have had serious thoughts of suicide. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that in 2021, suicide was the second leading cause of death for people between the ages of 1014 and 2534.

If you or someone you know is having trouble or a crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat at 988lifeline.org. To learn how to get support for mental health, drug and alcohol issues, visit FindSupport.gov.

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To locate a treatment facility or provider, visit FindTreatment.gov or call 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

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