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Comprehensive Crisis Response

What is 988?

988 is a direct, three-digit line to trained behavioral health professionals that can open the door for all Oklahomans to seek the help they need, while sending the message that healing, hope and help are happening every day. The Federal Communications Commission adopted rules to establish 988 and turns it on nationally July 1, 2022. 988 is the first step to a multi-level crisis response.


Urgent Care and Crisis Centers are places of stabilization and offer the community a no wrong door access to mental health and substance use care. These facilities operate similar to a hospital emergency department that accepts all walk-ins, ambulance, fire and police drop-offs. The need to say yes to mental health crisis referrals, including working with persons of varying ages and clinical conditions regardless of acuity, informs program staffing, physical space, structure and use of chairs and recliners in addition to beds, offering flexible capacity and flexibility within a given space.

These facilities provide assessment and support, and are staffed 24/7/365 with a multidisciplinary team. This team includes but is not limited to psychiatrists, nurses, licensed behavioral health practitioners and peers with lived experience similar to the population served.

  • We are currently building a statewide mental health crisis response system
  • The system is funded by multiple sources to include state, federal, and reimbursement
  • Pieces already exist in the community and we’re building from this foundation
  • Follows national standards and best practice
  • Launching July 2022
  • 24/7 operation with licensed and certified mental health crisis specialists
  • Follow-up calls utilizing certified peer recovery support specialists
  • Connection and dispatch to local services and mobile crisis teams, including immediate communication and connection to 911, if needed
  • 80% of callers will experience resolution of crisis after interacting with the 988 Helpline.
  • Respond locally within the community to deescalate crisis situations
  • A team includes a licensed clinician and certified peer recovery support specialist or case manager
  • Utilizes best practices in behavioral health, including suicide prevention and intervention
  • Mobile teams dispatched by 988 Helpline and respond to crisis situations 24/7 for ANYONE in need 
  • 988 Helpline (including mobile crisis teams) will immediately link to and schedule needed services with local treatment providers
  • Follow up services are imperative and will be the first step in preventing future crisis situations.
  • Should transportation to a higher level of care be needed, a third party contractor will provide free transportation to the nearest Urgent Recovery or Crisis Center
  • Existing partnerships with local law enforcement will help with severe crisis transports
  • The statewide system will be enhanced by adding more Urgent Recovery and Crisis Centers, increasing by 50% in state fiscal year 2022
  • This will increase accessibility to the right services for Oklahomans experiencing a mental health crisis
Last Modified on Jul 16, 2021
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