Reimagining Crisis Response
The 988 line will allow individuals to access crisis support without involving law enforcement. This approach can empower families to self-advocate for the right level of mental health care. By avoiding unnecessary emergency room visits, which aren’t typically designed to handle mental health crises, psychological assessments and treatments can be initiated much sooner.
911 dispatchers will also be able to re-route calls to 988, allowing law enforcement personnel to spend more time on their primary role of ensuring public safety. The 988 number will help offer a middle option for individuals who need immediate care.
This is a critical service given current difficulties in accessing timely, in-network outpatient mental health care.