The Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care National Call Center has been selected to serve as one of 12 national backup centers that will triage overflow calls made to 9-8-8, a new national hotline for mental health crisis and suicide prevention that launches July 16. People who are experiencing a mental health or substance-use crisis can dial or text the three-digit number 24/7 to immediately connect with trained counselors who will assess the call and provide support, risk assessment, safety planning and referrals to local mental health treatment services or resources.

The hotline, mandated by the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act of 2020 and funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), connects to the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800-273-TALK) network of crisis centers. To read the full story.