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A different kind of “hot”, 988 is the new hotline for a mental health crisis.

A different kind of “hot”, 988 is the new hotline for a mental health crisis.

With a July heatwave crossing the country, our groups have been talking about how “hot” it is!  But another “hot” topic in our conversation groups has included the much-anticipated hotline for mental health crises. This new national phone number “988” is designed to work similarly to the well known “911” First Responder number.  But while dialing 911 will connect you with EMS, the Fire Department or Police, dialing 988 will link you to a trained crisis counselor.

The easy to remember number is part of a national effort to create, and promote use of, a universal crisis line that can be accessed when someone is experiencing a mental health emergency or suicidal ideation.  Rather than summoning the police with sirens and lights, which can result in a more stressful situation, the call centers will be prepared to provide verbal support, as well as the ability to dispatch a team of trained professionals to help in managing the situation.

North Carolina Health News reported that the Department of Health and Human Services were mobilized and ready for the rollout.

This particular blog post about this new mental health emergency number (#988) has a twofold purpose.  Primarily, to inform you of this important resource, thus increasing awareness.  But also this post serves as a means of introduction to a vital topic that TAP in Blog will be addressing in the coming weeks:  Mental Health and Aphasia.  The impact of low mood, depression and quality of life challenges are often overlooked, under addressed and even blatantly ignored in the assessment and treatment of aphasia.  TAP Unlimited is committed to addressing these issues for both the individual with aphasia, as well as those who love them.

Stay tuned!