Crisis Care Resources

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Crisis care in the U.S. is undergoing changes with the anticipated implementation of a nation-wide three-digit number (988). The main purpose of the 988 number is to simplify access to suicide prevention services and mental health crisis counselors. To achieve this, in 2020, legislation was introduced to create a nation-wide three-digit number (988) that will route through the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. 988 is now active across the United States. 

This shift in mental health crisis response has the potential to break the cycle of ER visits, involvement in the criminal justice system, and experiences with homelessness, which disproportionately affect historically marginalized communities. Below are resources related to providing crisis care, including an overview of 988.  




988 Resources
  • A Guide to 988: America's Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis Lifeline - This guide highlights benefits of 988, reviews key pieces of the federal legislation, and describes state-level efforts.      
  • Overview of the SAMHSA Crisis Now Model, 988, and the GA Crisis & Access Line Given the ever-expanding inclusion of the term “crisis”, we must define what crisis services are and what they are not. Crisis services are for anyone, anywhere and anytime. In addition to 911 calls and support, law enforcement, and fire & rescue, crisis services include crisis lines, mobile crisis teams, and crisis receiving and stabilization facilities. In this webinar recording, leaders from Behavioral Health Link and the Georgia Crisis and Access Line discuss key components of SAMHSA's Crisis Now Model, implications of 988, and a "crisis now model" in action using Georgia as an example. 


Providing Crisis Care
  • Crisis Care Guide: Mental Health Equity in Underserved Populations - As the future of crisis care in the United States is on the cusp of being transformed, it is important to keep under-served and marginalized populations in mind when championing the changes and improvements to those services. This brief guide serves to highlight the unique struggles and barriers that many different marginalized communities experience when trying to access crisis services, and provides a glimpse into the future of crisis care.
  • Suicide and Crisis Services Access (Interactive Data Map) - According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide continues to be a leading cause of death and rates are increasing across the US, including the Southeast region. Populations at risk in Region IV states may face geographical disparities in accessing care, in particular crisis services. This Visualization Project presents county level suicide rates and behavioral health facilities providing crisis services.  
  • Suicide Risk Assessment & Crisis Response Planning - This infographic is intended to help mental health providers identify components of a suicide risk assessment and documentation best practices as well as identify key elements of an effective crisis and safety response plan. This infographic is meant to accompany our Suicide Risk Assessment Part 1 and Part 2 webinar recording. 
  • Suicide Risk Assessment Overview (Part 1) - This on-demand recording for mental health clinicians who provide counseling and assessment in a variety of settings demonstrates ways clinicians can recognize, assess, and intervene when working with at-risk clients. 
  • Suicide Risk Assessment In Action (Part 2) - This on-demand recording reviews the components of effective suicide risk assessment, identifies key elements in completing an effective crisis and safety plan, and details appropriate agency, professional, clinical, and social resources to engage during a crisis or risk assessment. 


Peer Perspectives in Crisis 
  • Perspectives in Mental Health Crisis is a four-part webinar series examining the experiences of Certified Peer Specialists (CPS) as they navigate, utilize, and provide crisis services. 
    • Defining a Mental Health Crisis - The first session, “Defining a Mental Health Crisis,” featured a discussion by Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network and guest panelists on how different groups of people define and use the words "mental health crisis" and how these different understandings impact outcomes.
    • Peer Experiences in Mental Health Crisis - In part 2 of this series, the facilitators and panel discuss the differing peer perspectives on and experiences with crisis, explain strategies for preventing and managing crises, and provide crisis support resources.
    • Decriminalizing Mental Health Crisis - In part 3 of this series, peer panelists discuss the factors that have contributed to the criminalization of mental health issues and identify strategies that can help communities to decriminalize mental illness, including diversion, co-responding, and forensic peer mentoring. 
    • Alternatives for Preventing & Responding to Crisis - 


Promising Crisis & Recovery Tools
  • Psychiatric Advance Directives: A Promising Tool to Enhance Crisis Care & Recovery - In this on-demand recording, Dr. Marvin Swartz engages participants in understanding Psychiatric Advance Directives (PADs) as a promising crisis and recovery tool. He discusses the legal origins of PADs and how they evolved for use in mental health settings as well as reviews implementation challenges in getting PADS into routine practice.
    • My Mental Health Crisis Plan App - This app developed by SMI Adviser, in collaboration with SAMHSA, provides an easy, step-by-step process for individuals to create and share a psychiatric advance directive (PAD).


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