988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

988_Brand_Op_3_Live Text

Hope has a new number: 988

On July 16, 2022, the United States entered a new era of behavioral health with a new 3-digit number to access services: 988.  Any Tennessean can call 988 and press 0 to be routed to their local call center.  Much like 911 did for emergency services, we believe this number will become a great resource for connecting people to the right treatment at the right time in the right setting. 

988 Offers 24/7 access to trained crisis counselors who can help people experiencing mental health-related distress. That could be:

  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Mental health or substance use crisis, or
  • Any other kind of emotional distress

People can call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org for themselves or if they are worried about a loved one who may need crisis support.  Call 988 and press 0 to be routed immediately to a crisis counselor.

988 Serves as a universal entry point so that no matter where you live, you can reach a trained crisis counselor who can help.  Want to learn more about 988?  Visit 988lifeline.org.

How it works:

1.       Each county is designated a Primary Call Center where all calls are routed.

2.       If the call is not answered by the Primary Call Center within a specified timeframe, each county has a Backup Call Center.

3.       If neither answers the call within a specified timeframe the call is routed to one of the National Backup Call Centers.

For Text and Chat:

We have 24/7 coverage for text and chat.  These services are provided by three crisis centers in Tennessee covering all 95 counties.  Chats/texts are identified by state and routed to the appropriate in-state providers.


How 988 Works with Tennessee's Crisis Continuum