Youth Mental Health ResourcesWebmaster2024-01-17T17:01:33-08:00
Crisis services are an integral component of addressing mental illness in communities across the state. The mental health crisis lines listed below are available for all people in Washington regardless of your income or whether you have insurance or not.
For immediate help: call 911 for a life-threatening emergency or 988 for a mental health emergency.
You may call your local county crisis line to request assistance for you or a friend or family member (24/7/365) regardless of whether you have insurance. Crisis line phone numbers by county
Call, text, or chat 988 to be connected to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL). It will be confidential, free, and available 24/7/365.
Services are available in Spanish, along with interpretation services in over 250 languages. For people who are deaf, hard of hearing, and TTY users: Use your preferred relay service or dial 711 then 1-800-273-8255.
You can dial 988 if you are having:
Thoughts of suicide
Mental health crises
Substance use concerns
Any other kind of emotional distress
You can also dial 988 if you are worried about a loved one who may need crisis support.
988 does not replace any crisis call centers in Washington state. It is an addition to the state’s network of crisis center providers. The ten-digit NSPL number, 1-800-273-TALK (8255), is still active along with 988.
For questions about the 988 programs, please email 988ProgramInfo@doh.wa.gov. Do not use this inbox if you or someone you know needs crisis support. Instead, call, text, or chat 988.
Native and Strong- 9-8-8 line
One of our state’s three 988 crisis centers, this line is available for people who call the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline and is specifically for Washington’s American Indian and Alaska Native communities. Calls are answered by Native crisis counselors who are tribal members and descendants closely tied to their communities. The Native and Strong Lifeline counselors are fully trained in crisis intervention and support, with special emphasis on cultural and traditional practices related to healing. Nation’s first Native and Strong Lifeline Launches as Part of 988 | Washington State Department of Health
Poisonings and overdose attempts are on the rise- the best prevention in case of exposure is to have the hotline number handy.
Safe Medication Return’s new website and toll-free number
Secure storage and safe disposal of medication helps reduce overdoses, poisonings, and suicide attempts. Safe Medication Return lets people appropriately dispose of unwanted household over the counter and prescription medications (including medications for household pets).
Call (844) 482-5322 or visit the site for more information or to order mail-back supplies.
Out-of-home firearm storage interactive map
The goal of Harborview’s Injury Prevention & Research Center and University of Washington’s Firearm Injury & Policy Research Program is to reduce firearm injury and death and prevent suicide and domestic violence. This interactive map found here shows local businesses and law enforcement agencies willing to consider requests for temporary, voluntary firearm storage.
You’re not alone. There is someone that’s willing to listen to you without judgment. Teen Link is a program of Crisis Connections that serves youth in Washington State.
Our teen volunteers are trained to listen to your concerns and talk with you about whatever’s on your mind – bullying, drug and alcohol concerns, relationships, stress, depression, or any other issues you’re facing. No issue is too big or too small! Calls and chats are confidential. Talk it out!
This article features considerations, pathways to finding a provider, types of therapy, and finding a good fit.
Washington State Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens
How to Use the Mental Health Referral Service Call 833-303-5437 Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Or, complete an online request.
What can families expect?
First, you have a telephone call (15–20 minutes) with a Referral Specialist to chat about what type of mental health services your child/teen needs.
Next, the Referral Specialist will research mental health providers in your area to find at least 2 providers that meet your family’s needs.
After matches are found, a referral specialist will call and email the information to you to coach how to access a provider in real-time.
A few weeks after providing the referrals, the referral specialist will check if the matches were a good fit and an appointment was scheduled. At this time, we will address any barriers you experienced and match you to another provider as needed.
Our service works closely with Primary Care Providers throughout WA State and faxes the referral matches to your PCP for care coordination. For families with Apple Health insurance, referral matches are sent to Apple Health case managers to provide additional care support.
How to use the PAL line: Call 866-599-7257 Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
PAL partners with the Washington Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens listed above to support “primary care providers (doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants) with questions about mental health care such as diagnostic clarification, medication adjustment, or treatment planning. Child and adolescent psychiatrists are available to consult during business hours.
Like the PAL lines above, PAL for Moms is a perinatal psychiatry consult line that provides perinatal mental health consultation, recommendations and referrals for Washington state providers caring for pregnant or postpartum patients.
How to connect to PAL for Moms: Call 877-725-4666 (PAL4MOM), available weekdays 9am – 5pm.
Deconstructing the Mental Health System is a nonprofit founded as a means to bring anti-racist therapists & wellness practitioners together to address the mental health system’s racial and financial inequities, through education and other initiatives, such as our Free Therapy & Wellness Program and a free directory for Therapists & Wellness Professionals who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Color.
Led and staffed by people with lived experiences with racism. They offer support to those who are feeling the emotional impacts of racist violence and microaggressions, as well as the emotional impacts of immigration struggles and other cross-cultural issues.
Behavioral Health Services eligibility is often determined by your insurance coverage.
Many insurance companies have the benefit of behavioral health case management. Behavioral health case management can assist with locating services for your child or youth.
Washington has transitioned to integrated managed care which allows services to be coordinated through a single health plan including mental health and substance use disorder treatment. If you or your youth are Medicaid eligible you should contact your Managed Care Organization (MCO) for care coordination and case management needs. Here is contact information for the MCO’s:
Questions/ need help with grievance processes, appeals, administrative hearing processes? Office of Behavioral Health Advocacy (formerly known as the Behavioral Health Ombuds) has peers with lived experience whose services are free and confidential. Serves as a neutral and confidential intermediary and provides an informal process to support residents in resolving complaints related to behavioral health programs, services, and it’s certified providers. This interactive map will connect you to your area’s regional contact. Office of Behavioral Health provides information and referrals to all community members and assist with complaints, grievances, appeals, Mental Health Advanced Directives, and the Fair Hearings process. OBHA also can help navigate any self-funded employer health plans, self-funded government plans, and religious organization health plan information.
Where to turn for Insured employer health plans,
Office of Behavioral Health provides information and referrals to all community members and assist with complaints, grievances, appeals, Mental Health Advanced Directives, and the Fair Hearings process. Learn more here
Self-funded employer health plans, Self-funded government plans, and religious organization health plans.
Psychotic disorders rarely emerge suddenly. Most often, the symptoms evolve and become gradually worse over a period of months or even years. Early intervention with evidence-based treatment decreases the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP), improving outcomes over a lifetime, resulting in reduced health care costs, and improved quality of life for individuals and their families.
Wraparound with Intensive Services, or WISe, is an approach to helping children, youth, and their families with intensive mental health care. Services are available in home and community settings and offer a system of care based on the individualized need of the child or youth. WISe is a voluntary service that takes a team approach to support you and your family in meeting your goals.
The Children’s Long-term Inpatient Program (CLIP) is the only publicly funded, long-term inpatient program for youth in Washington State where youth ages 5-17 years old may be voluntarily committed and those from 13-17 years old may be involuntarily committed. Four CLIP inpatient psychiatric facilities have a total of 94 funded beds.
The Center of Parent Excellence (COPE) project
The COPE project was developed as a support to enhance our System of Care framework. The project is intended to provide a pathway for Washington State parents who are accessing and navigating the children’s behavioral health system to have peer support to ease their journey, whenever possible.
Support is provided by A Common Voice, a statewide, family-run nonprofit organization that provides advocacy and support for families whose children have intensive behavioral health needs.
Find help through the COPE project
The COPE project is staffed by lead parent support specialists, hired for their lived experience as a parent/caregiver. If you are a Washington State parent/caregiver of a child/youth who may benefit from assistance accessing and navigating behavioral health services, please contact your regional lead parent support specialist.
Dads M.O.V.E is expanding! With a recent SAMSHA grant, the program is now hiring and serving Eastern Washington and Grays Harbor areas.
Dads M.O.V.E. seeks to provide every parent/caregiver (especially dads) with the tools, support, and training needed to be fully engaged in the recovery of their children.
NAMI Support Groups meet in person and online across Washington. Find groups that meet about a wide range of topics including Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Support Groups, Autsim Spectrum Support Groups, LGBTQ+ Support Groups, Survivors of Suicide Loss Support Groups, Partners, Siblings & Friends Support Groups, and more.
(wa.gov)’s website has information on DDA services, eligibility, training, contacts and more.
Parent to Parent
Parent to Parent matches parents of children with special needs to parents with similar experiences. This peer-supporting-peer program offers parental emotional support, connection to community services, social and recreational events, and more.
University of Washington in partnership with Seattle Children’s hospital provides training, resources, education, and case staffing for professionals serving children with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.
Helps children and adults with ASD get access to healthcare, education, and legal services (legal services in partnership with Northwest Justice Project).
The Arc of Washington State Advocates for the rights of citizens with developmental disabilities. They also offer a parent-to-parent program that offers support and information for families of children with developmental disabilities. Phone: (360) 357-5596 or (888) 754-8798
Autism Speaks Has an expansive hub of resources for individuals and families with Autism. Autism Speaks is enhancing lives today and accelerating a spectrum of solutions for tomorrow. Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the lifespan, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. They do this through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions.
Jessica Kingsley Publisher Has a large selection of books on Neurodiversity for parents, providers, and patients. jkp.com
Open Doors for Multicultural Families Open Doors offers one-on-one, individualized support for a variety of issues and challenges facing families of loved ones with developmental or intellectual disabilities including special education consultations, assistance applying for benefits, access to therapies, among others. Families receive assistance in their most comfortable, when possible, from a bilingual bi-cultural Family Support Specialist or through an interpreter. Also offered are parent support groups to come together to learn and share in their most comfortable language with other parents who share their culture and experiences. Phone: (253) 216-4479 Email:email@example.com
Office of Developmental Disabilities Ombuds. The DD Ombuds collects and investigates complaints brought by those who use developmental disabilities services. The DD Ombuds resolves complaints at the lowest possible level. The DD Ombuds protects choice, autonomy and makes sure people with disabilities have access to advocacy. The DD Ombuds promotes the well-being of people who receive state services, and all DD Ombuds services are resident-directed and person-centered. The DD Ombuds also monitors service procedures, reviews service facilities, provides information on rights, writes reports, and recommends changes to Washington State Government. The Office of DD Ombuds is not a part of the Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA), but if you are having problems or with DD services, or do not believe they are providing adequate resources, you may contact the office of DD Ombuds. They have offices in Seattle, Spokane and Olympia. To file a complaint, you can either call 1 (833) 727-8900 Or visit https://ddombuds.org/ and click on “File a Complaint” at the top of the webpage.
Autism Spectrum Disorder Apps (shared by intelligent.com)
Habitica is a task manager to “gamify your life” turning daily tasks and to-dos into quests to level up your avatar to empower reaching daily goals.
MindMeisterorganizes and prioritizes all your thoughts into an easy-to-see mind map for those that prefer visualizing their plans, processes, and ideas.
National Council on Severe Autism provides information, advocacy, and support for the Profound Autism population to address the needs of this population and support overwhelmed parents/ families.
The Center of Excellence on LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity shares a language guidance for sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression (SOGIE) for the most recent language used in the community.
Introduction to Diagnosis Overviews
What to look for common medications, and alternative treatments.
Depression Symptoms, Types, Causes, and Symptoms article from Drug Watch:
Recorded Webinar: LGBTQ+ Equity Center presents Sexual Orientation and Behavioral Health 101. This webinar defines sexual orientation and explores related terms and concepts in human sexuality with insight into the unique experiences of people who have diverse sexual orientations, covers specific behavioral health disparities including risk and protective factors, and provides a toolkit of best practices for real-time application. Learning credits are available.