Suicide Prevention Lifeline Transitions to 988

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline number transitions Saturday, July 16 to 988, a number which can be both called and texted.

One person died by suicide every 11 minutes in 2020, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Individuals who abuse drugs often commit suicide.

Various informational videos and graphics are available to share on social media.

“988 is more than a number, it is a message: we’re there for you. Through this and other actions, we are treating mental health as a priority and putting crisis care in reach for more Americans,” said Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, according to a news release from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Becerra is meeting with states regarding the lifeline transition on HHS’ National Tour to Strengthen Mental Health. “There is still much work to do. But what matters is that we’re launching, 988 will be live. We are looking to every governor and every state in the nation to do their part to make this a long-term success.”

The Biden-Harris Administration expanded federal investment in the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline from $24 million to $432 million to shorten response times, renovate crisis centers and improve back-up center capacity, and add services such as a Spanish language sub-network.

While 988 is available beginning July 16, the 10-digit Lifeline number 1-800-273-TALK (8255) will still be functional and route calls to 988. Callers to 988 can also connect to the Veterans Crisis Line.