In July 2022, 988 will become the national three-digit dialing code for the National
Suicide Prevention Lifeline, replacing the current phone number of 1-800-273-TALK
(8255). Americans needing support should continue to call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) until
The new 988 number, once implemented, will continue to be America’s mental health
safety net by providing emotional support for people in distress, reducing suicides and
mental health crises, and providing a pathway to well-being for all.
988 represents a long past due opportunity to shift from a law enforcement and justice
system response to one of immediately connecting to care for individuals in suicidal,
mental health and substance use crises. The number is the first step to make a
fundamental shift in how people in crisis are engaged in our communities.
When you’ve got a police, fire or rescue emergency, you call 911. When you have an
urgent mental health need, you’ll call 988.
About the Lifeline
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional
support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,
across the United States.
Currently, you can reach the Lifeline by dialing 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or visiting
You do not have to be suicidal to call.
All calls to the Lifeline are answered by trained crisis workers at over 180 local crisis
centers around the country.
The Lifeline received nearly 2.4 million calls in 2020. With an easy to remember and dial
number like 988, the Lifeline hopes to reach many more people in emotional crises.
About the 988 State Planning Grants
The grants were awarded to 50 U.S. states and territories.
The grants were funded privately by Vibrant Emotional Health, the nonprofit
administrator of the Lifeline, through donations.
Vibrant’s 988 Planning Grant offers states tangible funding for first steps towards
implementing a system in which 988 calls will be answered by qualified National Suicide
Prevention Lifeline centers and connected to community-based crisis services when
Vibrant is collaborating with the Education Development Center (EDC) to provide a
series of webinars and technical assistance throughout the planning process.
How States Will Use the Grants
Funding can be used to evaluate current system capacity to meet the projected demand
for 988-related services, create a roadmap to fill any assessed system/community gaps,
and solidify a crisis system to deliver focused crisis resources for those in need.
Vibrant’s 988 Planning Grant Funding offers a resource to thoughtfully create a
data-informed roadmap to make that shift and funding to support personnel to work that
Each public health or mental health agency will collaborate with its Lifeline-network crisis
centers to create a 988 implementation plan and continue to support the Lifeline’s
operational, clinical, and performance standards that allow access to care.
For additional support regarding communications and media, please contact the Lifeline
Communications team at firstname.lastname@example.org.