Crisis Now: Dedicated to Transforming Mental Health Crisis Systems



Mental health crisis services are an integral part of the health care continuum. A crisis system is only as healthy as its ability to provide timely and effective care for those in need. Challenges in current crisis systems often revolve around access to the right care at the right time. Lack of access frequently leads to an escalation of the crisis that then requires a more costly intervention. These cases tax the crisis system as well as those seeking services.

In order to address these challenges, the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention created a task force to advance objective 8.2 of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (NSSP). The results were Crisis Now: Transforming Services is Within Our Reach, a website dedicated to providing the framework needed to optimize mental health crisis services within communities. To promote these principals, NASMHPD partnered with the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and RI International.

“There is a roadmap to a safe, effective and value-focused mental health crisis system. NASMHPD is proud to be the lead organization in the creation of the website. With the tools and information presented on this website, any community can make improvements to their crisis system and see meaningful results.” - Dr. Brian Hepburn, NASMHPD Executive Director

“The website houses resources around the core elements of a sustainable effective crisis system and provides a self-assessment as an important starting point. It offers practical solutions to maximizing care and improving community safety in a sustainable way.” – David Covington, RI International

“The website demonstrates a system that diverts people in the midst of a mental health crisis away from the caregivers of last resort, emergency departments and law enforcement to those that can best help. Additionally, the website shows these solutions are being applied now and points to those who have successfully implemented these principles in their communities.” - Dr. John Draper, Director of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

The Crisis Now website can be accessed at

As part of Crisis Now, the #CrisisTalk website was launched in May 2019 to facilitate conversations about mental health crises, including missed opportunities, gaps, tools, and best practices. This innovative publication provides a platform for diverse experts and people with Lived Experience to exchange thoughts, knowledge, and innovations. Each article shares a person’s perspective, whether that’s an emergency department doctor who tells her story, revealing the challenges emergency physicians experience when faced with a patient in crisis, or a student who was having suicidal ideation and his university chose legal self-protection over doing what was best for him.

You can access #CrisisTalk at this link here.

About our Crisis Now Partners:

NSPL (, provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, across the United States through a national network of over 160 local crisis centers, combining custom local care and resources with national standards and best practices. Launched by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Mental Health Association of New York City (MHA-NYC) on January 1, 2005.

Action Alliance (, the public-private partnership working with more than 250 national partners advancing the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention with the vision of a nation free from the tragic experience of suicide and a goal of reducing the annual suicide rate 20 percent by 2025. Catalyst for the Zero Suicide in Healthcare and Crisis Now: Transforming Services innovations.

RI International ( is a global organization with more than 50 programs throughout the United States and abroad, provides Crisis, Health, Recovery and Consulting services, wherein our values and priorities include: maintaining a recovery culture, ensuring clinical best practices, making safety a priority for all, measuring value and results, optimizing quality and compliance, and serving as a key resource for First Responders.