Mental Health Hotlines/Locating Assistance

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Kathryn Patricelli, MA was an editor with from 2004-2015. She received her Master's Degree in Counseling and Psychological Services, and holds a Bachelor’s ...Read More

We received a question from a reader recently asking about where he/she could find links to low-cost or free counseling services. Today, many insurance companies are restricting or limiting access to mental health services and many people do not have insurance. This can leave those needing mental health referrals and services in a bind and feeling like there is no one out there who can help them. However, there are ways to find resources and services who will work with you at reduced rates or in many cases, for free.

One of the best referral sources available is the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). SAMHSA works to provide callers with federal, state, and local organizations dedicated to treating and preventing mental illness.


Their website includes links to hotlines, the ability to search for services in your area, and a large collection of high-quality mental health publications.

The site can be accessed at: SAMHSA

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The links to national toll-free mental health hotlines who can provide referrals and in some cases, crisis counseling, can be found online at: Hotlines.

The Community Mental Health Services directory, which can be used to find help in your area is located at: Directory

For those who would rather have hands-on assistance in locating a service or organization, you can call the department Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. EST at 1-800-789-2647 (tdd available at 866-889-2647) and a specialist will walk you through your concerns and find organizations that can address those issues with you.

Written by Kathryn Patricelli, M.A.

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