Suicide hotline number 988 receives more than 96K calls during its launch week

Monday, July 25, 2022
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Seven call centers around Illinois have been contracted to help individuals in crisis or their loved ones get help locally.

It seems clear that the new three-digit suicide prevention lifeline is much needed.

The video featured is from a previous report.

According to new data, the 988 number received more than 96,000 calls, texts and chats during the first week it launched.

The volume of people reaching out was up about 45% from the week before the transition and up 66% from the same time last year.

The lifeline used to be 1-800-273-TALK, but it transitioned to 988 on July 16 in an effort to make it easy to remember.

RELATED: Illinois prepares for new National Suicide Crisis Hotline

The nonprofit 'Vibrant Emotional Health' operates the lifeline on behalf of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

The 988 system will build on an existing network of over 200 crisis centers nationwide staffed by counselors who answer millions of calls each year - about 2.4 million in 2020. Calls to the old lifeline will still go through even with 988 in place.

If you feel suicidal or you're worried about someone you know, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988. You can also text the Crisis Text Line by messaging TALK to 741741.

For more information, visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org.