The Maryland Department of Health recently launched a new initiative to help residents struggling with mental health crises, MD Mind Health. The department announced the text-based helpline – developed in partnership with the state’s crisis hotline, Maryland 211 – as a means to help individuals struggling with social distancing and isolation during the pandemic.
From The Baltimore Sun:
“…MD Mind Health, was spurred by crisis hotline texting increasing by 842% since March 2019, the department said in a news release Wednesday. It also is a low-cost intervention that can reach and attract more people, such as teens, young adults and those in rural areas.”
“Physical distancing has left many feeling more alone and isolated, and these feelings can fuel sadness, depression, cravings for substances and relapse, negative coping skills, thoughts of suicide and other mental health problems,” said Dr. Aliya Jones, deputy secretary for the behavioral health administration. “We must find healthy ways to respond. Even though we may not be seeing as much of each other, we don’t have to feel alone.”
Callers who send a text message to 898-211 will receive supportive mental health texts and reminders about service providers in their local area.
For more information, see the press release from the Maryland Department of Health.