911 operators not prepared to handle mental health crisis calls: Study

  • A rising variety of cities are testing not sending police to 911 calls about mental health.
  • Many 911 name facilities in a brand new survey stated they do not have the coaching to handle mental health calls.
  • Experts stated the info highlights the fact tens of millions of Americans face after they name 911 in crisis.

Cities across the nation have been testing programs in recent years to send mental health professionals instead of police to some emergency calls. But a survey of 911 name facilities suggests the individuals answering the telephone might not have the sources to handle these crises. 

A survey revealed Tuesday by Pew Charitable Trusts of greater than three dozen emergency name facilities discovered few have employees educated to handle behavioral health crises. Most facilities additionally did not have entry to mental health professionals who may also help with the calls or first responders within the area educated to handle such crises. 

“For a lot of people, the first contact they have when they’re in crisis is this person at that 911 call center,” stated Tiffany Russell, Pew Charitable Trusts’ mission director for mental health and justice partnerships.

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