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Outage shuts down 988 national mental health crisis hotline

With suicides on the rise, the government wants to make the national crisis hotline easier to use. A proposed three-digit number — 988 — could replace the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
Jenny Kane
While phone call service has been disrupted, crisis counselors at the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline are available for emotional support and other services via web chat or SMS texting.

The nation's 988 hotline, which provides support for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis, has been down for several hours.

Beginning around 10 a.m. on Thursday, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline began experiencing service interruptions that affected phone calls, according to the service website.

Support is still available via text and online chat, Lifeline said. Those in crisis can text 988 or chat online at 988lifeline.org/chat.

Additionally, local services are also answering calls.

  • Cuyahoga County — FrontLine Service 216-623-6888
  • Summit and Lake counties — Portage Path Behavioral Health 330-762-6110
  • Lorain County — The Nord Center 800-888-6161
Taylor Wizner is a health reporter with Ideastream Public Media.
Stephanie is the deputy editor of news at Ideastream Public Media.