Virginia 988:
Answering the call to provide access to mental health crisis support.

With rising levels of anxiety, depression, emotional distress, and substance-related deaths, it’s increasingly crucial for people to get immediate help if they’re in a mental health crisis. That’s why 988 began – to create a direct connection to support and resources for anyone experiencing mental distress. This easy-to-remember three-digit lifeline was launched in Virginia – and nationwide – in July of 2022.

The services of 988 don’t end when the phone call does.

When you call 988, a trained crisis worker will be on the line to listen and support you with your situation. But that help isn’t limited to one phone call. 988 can also be the entry point to Virginia’s Crisis Services, a support system that offers a continuum of care to Virginians who are experiencing mental health distress. Along with 988, Virginia’s Crisis Services include:

Mobile Crisis Response, which comes to the person in crisis to help with on-scene evaluation, treatment, and intervention.
Community-Based Stabilization, which includes support following an initial crisis either with services available in the community or via referral to a Crisis Stabilization Unit.
Crisis Stabilization Units, which operate much like a hospital emergency department specifically for people in a mental health crisis. Typically, this involves a short-term stay (under 24 hours).
Emergency Services, which are code-mandated services providing screening assessments to anyone who is identified as experiencing a behavioral health crisis who meets the criteria for involuntary commitment.
REACH, the statewide crisis system of care for people with developmental disabilities.

988 is changing the way Virginia responds to mental health crisis.

With this three-digit code, calls that were once made to 911 for law enforcement dispatch are now directed to a trained mental health crisis worker.