If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741.


Essential Role of Technology for Today’s 988 Crisis Centers

Discover strategies to improve crisis center management.

Read the guide below or enter your email to download your copy to take on the go.

Essential Role of Technology for Today’s 988 Crisis Centers




It’s little surprise that crisis centers are facing intense pressure to support surging numbers of individuals experiencing a mental health and/or substance use crisis. Consider this: More people died from suicide in the U.S. in 2022 than in any year on record, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In addition, 4.3% of the population reported having suicidal thoughts. And despite the normalization of therapy as a key part of healthcare, the situation isn’t improving.  

Fortunately, with the launch of the 988 Lifeline, more people are able to connect to support. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 988 received more than 6.5 million calls, texts, and chats between July 2022 and September 2023.  

But with rising demand comes an urgent need to bolster operational efficiency. 988 and other crisis centers must rely on strategic implementation of technologies and practices that streamline workflows, improve staff performance, and seamlessly coordinate care across an array of crisis and behavioral health professionals. Robust crisis management software is essential: It ties together various aspects of crisis response, from initial contact to the delivery of essential services. With the right software solutions, centers can ensure that individuals in crisis receive timely help that sets them on the path to better mental health. 

Chapter 1

Why 988 and Crisis Center Operations Demand Strong Technology

988 operator with headset on desktop computer
Chapter 1

In this chapter, we’ll explore the critical need for robust technology to successfully manage 988 and other crisis call centers and explain how technology can support a complete system of care that enhances care coordination, efficiency, and compliance. 

Enabling Effective Crisis Management With a Complete System of Care

A survey of American adults last year revealed that 90% view mental health as a crisis. The effects of the pandemic on psyches are still lingering as populations see higher rates of substance use and diagnoses of mental illnesses. The 988 hotline has helped, but crisis centers continue to face challenges. 

The answer? A complete system of care. Providers must have a full complement of resources to ensure they’re providing effective crisis management – a comprehensive approach that helps organizations and individuals prepare for, respond to, and navigate crises. 

Start with a strong crisis response team 

SAMHSA's national guidelines identify three elements of an integrated crisis system: 

  1. Regional crisis call centers

    These centers must be available at any time of day to help people in crisis. Those answering calls should be trained to handle sensitive situations and respond to callers in an effective manner. 

  2. Crisis mobile team response

    People who need in-person help should be able to receive it from a mobile team regardless of where they are. Each team needs a minimum of two people, including at least one licensed clinician. They must possess skills such as de-escalation and conflict resolution. These teams are responsible for coordinating warm handoffs to providers, including hospitalists and EMS workers. 

  3. Crisis receiving and stabilization facilities

    All crisis care systems must have a physical place where people can go for help. Individuals in distress often end up in the emergency department (ED). This is not ideal: EDs usually lack the appropriate services and the private, quiet, and safe space helpful for those experiencing a mental health or substance use crisis. 

Align your approach with SAMHSA’s six core principles 

SAMHSA has also identified six best practices for crisis management systems: 

  1. Focus on the future

    Simply making it through a behavioral health crisis isn’t enough. Systems should help individuals move on and live full, happy lives.  

  2. Critical peer involvement

    People in distress respond well when peers can talk with them about similar experiences. Crisis management systems need to incorporate staff who reflect the characteristics of the community.

  3. Trauma-informed care

    A previous history of trauma is common in people experiencing a mental health or substance use crisis, and providers must take that into account.

  4. Zero Suicide/Suicide Safer Care

    Suicide prevention is central to crisis management, and the Suicide Prevention Resource Center offers a toolkit for crisis centers to implement evidence-based actions.

  5. Safe environment for all parties

    Both clients and staff need to feel physically, emotionally, and psychologically safe when working through an emergency. Leaders should implement a “no force first” policy and create a welcoming space for individuals in crisis.

  6. Partner with law enforcement

    Law enforcement, EMS, and dispatch staff are essential stakeholders in crisis systems. Strong relationships across all partners in behavioral health and substance abuse care are essential for public safety and to avoid the criminalization of mental illness.  

Get technology support for crisis hubs 

It's clear that crisis workers have enormous responsibilities. To achieve the ideal state of care, they need robust technological support. Leaders must look to software specifically designed to meet SAMHSA's national guidelines and built to connect both in- and out-of-network providers. This creates the foundation for complete crisis management and helps assure that callers get the appropriate level of care promptly. 

Also critical to this mission: careful care coordination. 

Enhancing Care Coordination for 988 and Crisis Center Response

Crisis center care coordination has long been a challenge, with many centers struggling to connect callers to immediate, appropriate help. At the root of these difficulties is often a lack of standardized communication and data sharing among various stakeholders. This creates dangerous silos and delays in care. Without efficient, warm handoffs between organizations such as call centers, mobile crisis teams, law enforcement, crisis transportation services, and inpatient and outpatient facilities, people seeking services will fall through the cracks and receive less than optimal support.  

Understanding the challenges 

Responding to a 988 call de-escalates the immediate crisis, but what then? After assessing the need for follow-up care and treatment, providers may face barriers to smooth transitions; this disrupts both the flow of information sharing and potentially exacerbates the already fragile mental state of the client. 

These gaps in care coordination arise from a confluence of challenges: 

  • Silos without Standardization

    Crisis service models incorporate a mix of staff and resources both onsite and remote, each of which likely uses its own system. This fragmented approach impairs integration and data sharing, and can lead to security challenges and data loss.

  • Lack of Visibility

    This siloed approach also means that no single entity can track a caller’s progress, share notes, access relevant client history, or determine the availability of transportation or beds.

  • Poor Workflow

    The absence of a customized workflow can create uncertainty, and even confusion, regarding next steps. 

  • Lack of Follow-up
    These and other factors leave crisis centers struggling to schedule appointments and connect clients to the appropriate care. 

All this undermines efficient crisis management plans and puts clients in danger. It also runs counter to SAMHSA’s no-wrong-door philosophy, which calls for clients to be connected to the most appropriate level of treatment. 

Finding a solution to support smoother crisis management plans 

Stakeholders must have a shared platform with real-time care coordination that includes dispatching and appointment scheduling. It should facilitate digital intake, deploy mobile crisis teams swiftly, and maintain open lines of communication between the crisis center staff and response teams. Beyond the immediate crisis, it should also support provider search functionality, appointment scheduling, and client monitoring. It must be fully interoperable, and it needs a user-friendly interface that doesn’t introduce complexity or create unnecessary delays.  

As the Institute of Medicine wrote in its groundbreaking Crossing the Quality Chasm series, “Care coordination is the outcome of effective collaboration.” Technology, deployed correctly, can ensure that everyone is on the same page, ready to act promptly.  

What it Takes to Successfully Respond to 988 Crisis Line Calls 

The 988 crisis line rollout would not have been such a success without the dedication and support of thousands of care professionals, starting with call center staff. These individuals need specialized skills, and technological upgrades can help them meet national guidelines and expectations – as well as improve daily operations. 

Meeting SAMHSA's expectations 

To better understand the high standards that call operators in a crisis center must meet, it's helpful to review the SAMHSA's minimum expectations. Ideally, a 988 crisis line: 

  • Operates 24/7/365 

  • Is staffed by clinicians overseeing clinical triage and competent staff 

  • Answers every call or coordinates overflow coverage with an acceptable resource 

  • Assesses suicide risk according to National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) standards, as well as whether the client presents a danger to others 

  • Coordinates connections to crisis mobile teams 

  • Connects individuals to facility-based care through warm hand-offs and organizes transportation as needed 

The goal is to prevent the situation from escalating and promote recovery for people experiencing a crisis. To meet this goal, however, crisis center leaders must ensure that everyone contributing to caller response has what they need to do their jobs. 

Outlining the training and skills needed for call center staff

Crisis call centers have different training protocols; those offering 988 crisis line support must offer basic training on assessment procedures, working with third-party callers, and protocols for handling callers at imminent risk of harm to self or others. In addition, staff can cultivate these seven important skills to do well in their roles: 

  • Calm demeanor: Callers are reaching out during an extremely challenging time in their lives, and it's important for crisis center staff to remain calm as they work to defuse the situation.

  • Patience: When a call is placed, the path ahead is not exactly straightforward. Team members answering calls need to be patient, particularly when dealing with individuals who are reluctant to share information.

  • Compassion and empathy: People call crisis centers because they want someone to listen. Those responding to their calls must be able to offer compassion to the person in need.

  • Boundaries and self-care practices: This work can be emotionally taxing. Staff members benefit from setting boundaries so that they aren’t carrying the stress of others, as well as taking care of themselves in their daily lives.

  • Active listening: Using this technique can help uncover the reason someone is calling and assist the staff member as they assess the caller’s mental and emotional state.

  • Cultural sensitivity: Callers hail from all types of backgrounds. Staff must be sensitive to differences between groups so they don't alienate anyone or make them feel unsupported.

  • Understanding of relevant technical tools: Just as call center staff should be trained in appropriate assessment and care protocols, they also need to be up to date with any tech tools the call center uses to streamline workflows. 

These skills enable call center professionals to provide effective, long-term support for people facing a mental health emergency. A platform that provides them with resources and updated guidance can further ensure they’re equipped to respond to any person calling for aid. 
Chapter 2

Meeting the Needs of 988 & Crisis Center Stakeholders

988 operator smiling
Chapter 1

The list of people who benefit from the integration of advanced technology as well as data analytics in crisis centers is long and includes frontline responders, administrative staff, and most importantly, clients. This chapter highlights the transformative effects of targeted technological solutions and data-driven approaches to crisis care for all parties. 

6 Challenges That 988 and Crisis Services Face & How Tech Can Help 

As with any other first responders, crisis center staff and care providers must work quickly to serve diverse populations. Without the right tools in place, they can lose track of clients and crucial information and face dire consequences. The right software platform is a critical ally, enabling providers to streamline operations, enhance efficiency, and have a positive impact on people's lives. 

What follows are six common challenges that 988 and crisis centers encounter and how the right software platform can address them: 

Challenge #1 Lack of clarity around client info and care 

Crisis teams can struggle to understand what services have already been provided to a client, as well as what resources are available to help at that very moment. 

Solution An all-in-one communication platform

Providers need a platform that centralizes communication across the entire continuum of care. For example, with Core's Cx360 software, everything is kept in a central place, making it easy for staff to identify what's already been done for the client and what needs to happen next. 

Challenge #2 Difficulty identifying high-risk clients 

One of the most important parts of working in a crisis team role is being able to triage clients and manage their care accordingly. NSPL provides a rubric that staff can use to assess each client and mandates a minimum of three prompt questions be asked, but staff may need assistance staying in compliance with these guidelines. 

Solution A platform that offers built-in ability to triage high-risk clients 

The NSPL's core principles and subcomponents of suicidality are meant to be the foundation of a crisis center’s risk assessment instrument. Regardless of their specific approach, a robust solution like Cx360 can help call center staff quickly identify and prioritize the people who most need support by providing constantly updated client risk scores. Risk scores are integrated and always available, helping ensure crisis management plans include the latest information. 

Challenge #3 Compliance requirements can be difficult to navigate 

There are multiple sets of requirements for crisis services teams to meet, including the aforementioned NSPL standards, the minimum standards for 988 implementation, and SAMHSA guidelines. It's hard to imagine that any one crisis team staff member could be responsible for remembering all these requirements, let alone ensuring they're met by their colleagues. 

Solution Software built to comply with minimum standards and expectations 

Care team members using Core’s Cx360 can respond to each emergency with the confidence that they're following prescribed best protocols and operating in compliance with all relevant guidelines.  

Challenge #4 Gaps in care plans 

Delays in information sharing between providers and teams, exacerbated by a lack of tools to communicate in real time, can impair coordination and lead to service gaps. 

Solution A system-of-care approach 

A holistic system-of-care approach, like the one developed by Cx360, allows for timely collaboration. Crisis services staff can log in to talk and collaborate with their team members by securely sending text messages and other immediate notifications. Whether providers are in or out of network, such a system can share information across all stakeholders so that no one is ever in the dark. This allows providers to quickly respond to the most current information and provide the highest possible level of care.  

Challenge #5 Lack of telehealth options 

For people who have difficulty making it to in-person appointments, telehealth can save lives. A recent study published by the Journal of Medical Internet Research revealed that people receiving telehealth psychiatric services and medication were over four times more likely to be in remission for suicidal ideation compared to those who didn’t receive care. However, not all platforms make it easy to coordinate telehealth services, which can affect the development of customized crisis management plans. When telehealth is considered as separate from other client care functions, it can be hard for clinicians, crisis center staff, and even clients to navigate. 

Solution A system with embedded telehealth features 

Telehealth integration is central to the complete system-of-care approach that ensures clients get the appropriate level of care for their unique needs. Systems that have an integrated telehealth platform enhance care coordination and close the loop on care. 

Challenge #6 Billing and collections are cumbersome processes 

For many in crisis services, billing after service and following up on collections are tough tasks and take time away from providing quality care. 

Solution Software that optimizes and automates billing and collections 

Systems that simplify these responsibilities are tremendous time savers. Cx360’s smart billing tools and automatic client follow-up keep revenue flowing and ease administrative burdens on staff, allowing them to focus on clients. 

The right platform — one designed specifically with behavioral health services in mind — can help crisis services teams improve care coordination, ensure compliance with guidelines and regulations, address gaps in care plans, integrate telehealth services, and deal with an array of other challenges that prevent optimal outcomes. And through the gathering of data, it can provide critical insights into performance gaps that need attention, ultimately helping to build a service that can improve population health. 

Behavioral Health Crisis Data: What Is It and Why Does It Matter? 

To sustain the momentum they have gained as they see more and more people through the worst moments in their lives, and to help them better serve the communities in which they operate, crisis teams must collect, monitor, and manage relevant data.  

Accurate data informs long-term strategies and identifies areas that require additional training. It can also be used to secure valuable funding and support for 988 response.  

The value of 988 mental health hotline data 

A robust technology platform makes such data collection possible, summarizing it into accessible, digestible, and easily shareable reports. This can: 

drive awareness icon

Drive awareness and understanding

The 988 mental health hotline has transformed behavioral health crisis care, yet some communities remain unaware of this resource. Understanding which communities have made use of the hotline and which have not can inform marketing campaigns that increase awareness of it and its purpose. Data can also dispel misinformation about how callers are treated and ease fears about involuntary psychiatric commitment and over-involvement of law enforcement.

optimize crisis management icon

Optimize crisis management and operations

Data analysis also helps to identify patterns and trends in behavioral health crisis calls and referrals, enabling crisis centers to optimize staff and resource allocation. This can lead to increased cost savings, more effective call handling, reduced wait times for callers, overall improved service delivery, and better outcomes.

understanding population needs icon

Improve understanding of population needs

Demographic information can reveal insights into which segments of the population are at highest risk for behavioral health and substance use issues. This information can assist local leaders as they develop resources, programs, and interventions to prevent diagnoses from escalating. Data can further highlight disparities in crisis prevention service access. By identifying underserved or marginalized communities, leaders can work to provide more equitable access to behavioral health care, particularly when it would reduce the need for use of the 988 mental health hotline.

support checkmark icon

Support long-term decision-making

Tracking data allows crisis centers to monitor outcomes. Data can inform decision-making on behavioral health crisis response at operational and policy levels, contributing to better outcomes for not only individuals in crisis, but the broader community.

Examples of crisis center data

Below are some of the basic types of crisis center data that are tracked for each element of the crisis management system. Through advanced technology platforms, these data points can be expanded to include more prescriptive metrics relevant to individual populations. 

Crisis call center services performance metrics
  • Call volume

  • Average speed of answer

  • Average delay

  • Call abandonment rate

  • Percentage of calls resolved by phone

  • Number of mobile teams dispatched  
Crisis mobile services performance metrics
  • Number served per eight-hour shift

  • Percentage of calls responded to within one hour/two hours

  • Longest response time

  • Percentage of mobile crisis responses resolved in the community 
Crisis receiving and stabilization services performance metrics
  • Percentage of referrals accepted

  • Percentage of referrals from law enforcement

  • Average length of stay

  • Percentage not referred to emergency department for medical care

  • Percentage completing an outpatient follow-up visit after discharge

  • Client satisfaction

There are many performance metrics to keep track of, and while some states or crisis call centers currently track data through regularly updated dashboards, systems can always be improved to match the needs of the teams using them. Read on to learn the specifics of how to use technology to optimize your operations. 

Back to top ↑

Chapter 3

How to Optimize Your 988 Crisis Center Operation

a group of 988 operators on their desktop computers
Chapter 1

While it‘s imperative that 988 and crisis center teams understand best practices for scaling their operations and effectively responding to callers facing psychological emergencies, they need practical, actionable strategies built on the thoughtful application of technology. In this final chapter, we go beyond theory, offering a hands-on tech checklist, innovative approaches to team training, and insights into leveraging telehealth services.

A Tech Implementation Checklist for 988 Crisis Response Teams

Crisis professionals need access to the right technologies that support service delivery across all stages of response and treatment – otherwise known as the complete continuum of care.  

Here are some of the characteristics of the ideal crisis continuum: 

multifaceted icon

Multifaceted: SAMHSA recommends that each 988 team be connected to other groups to create seamless care pathways, and they need to be equipped to address recovery needs, provide trauma-informed support, and practice standard safety procedures. 

integrate icon

Fully integrated into the broader care system: To support each client’s unique needs throughout the care continuum, SAMHSA notes, “crisis systems must not operate in isolation.” When crisis response teams and mobile units can seamlessly transition clients into the broader healthcare system, clients receive better, more coordinated care tailored to their needs. 

client-focused icon

Client-focused: Healthcare is always more effective when it's customized to the client. Effective and connected care requires providers to understand their clients’ lived experiences, then adapt their response to those identities and backgrounds. 

5 ways to make the most of crisis management technology

To support this ideal client-focused continuum of care, here are five actions crisis teams should take to effectively adopt — and use — care-enhancing technologies.  

  1. Find the right workforce management system 

    The volume increase caused by the suicide hotline number change means it’s even more critical for call centers to effectively staff and manage performance. Both Vibrant Emotional Health (the current administrator of the 988 number) and the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD) advise crisis response teams to adopt workforce management systems that:  

    • Forecast volume intervals and determine staffing levels
    • Monitor staff performance in real time
    • Work with existing call center systems
    • Support teams in handling surge capacity
    • Schedule call agents and manage day-to-day assignments
  2. Adopt an EHR platform that streamlines coordination

    A coordinated crisis response is only as good as the communication between providers. EHR (electronic health record) platforms that enable effective communication and information-sharing can allow providers to offer not only more client-aligned care, but also seamless transitions from one care setting to the next. SAMHSA outlines five levels of coordination across the crisis continuum, each increasing in degree of integration:  

    • Informal agency relationships across facilities
    • Shared protocols
    • Formal, coordinated partnerships
    • Data-sharing between facilities
    • Fully integrated and immersive care across the continuum 
  3. Ensure your EHR includes an integrated client tracking system

    A client tracking system that’s fully integrated into an EHR platform can help teams consolidate population-based data to identify trends or patterns, better understand and serve repeat clients, and improve their overall quality of care. The National Council for Mental Wellbeing recommends adopting an integrated client-tracking system that can:   

    • Identify clients who require follow-up communication  
    • Notify providers when a client contacts the center  
    • Enable teams to create, access, and securely share care plans
    • Allow teams to use behavioral health data for quality assurance  
  4. Use survey tools to gauge the employee experience

    Crisis response providers are regularly exposed to challenging situations that, according to NASMHPD, can cause compassion fatigue, sleep problems, and even depression or PTSD. It recommends using practice management software regularly for:  

    • Weekly pulse surveys
    • Annual employee engagement surveys
    • Annual organizational health surveys  
  5. Deploy telehealth services

    Not everyone in crisis has reliable access to a call number, and many prefer other methods of engaging with care providers. That’s why it’s important for modern crisis response teams to offer comprehensive telehealth, telepsychiatry, chat, and texting options. 

Enable the ideal continuum with technology

Today’s crisis response teams need access to a strong technology infrastructure that enables communication, coordination, and client-centered care at every stage of the continuum. Equipping teams with the right technologies can speed up crisis response, smooth out pathways, and improve quality of care, saving lives in the process.  

Building an Ideal Crisis Care System: The Role of Accountable Entities 

We’ve discussed the importance of seamless coordination and interoperability. That requires all the various moving parts to work in concert. But who is responsible for making it work?  

In its “Roadmap to the Ideal Crisis System,” the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry says: “An ideal behavioral health crisis system must have a mechanism to both finance a comprehensive continuum of crisis services and ensure the accountability and quality of the continuum’s performance.” That “accountable entity” provides oversight for 988 and crisis management systems. 

This person or group holds the crisis management system accountable for meeting performance standards and community needs. Its primary role is to ensure proper management and continuous improvement in the quality and outcomes of the services provided to the population, safeguarding the welfare and well-being of the people served by the system.  

Responsibilities include ensuring that:  

  • Individual service rates and overall funding are adequate to cover the cost of the services

  • Mechanisms are in place for tracking customers, customer experience, and performance 

  • Data is shared — including aggregate performance data and personal health information (PHI) — to improve performance  

  • Quality standards are identified, formalized, measured, and continuously monitored

Meeting the needs of all community members 

There’s no one structure for accountable entities. There are, however, requirements. The accountable entity designs and coordinates funding and services for a continuum that meets the needs of the entire community — providing services commensurate with population size and the geographic area served, and for all individuals, regardless of whether they’re insured.  

Implementing values-based accountability  

The accountable entity must incorporate and maintain core organizational values across all processes, focusing on person- and family-driven values. That means they need to ensure welcoming, hopeful, safe, accessible, recovery-oriented, resiliency-enhancing, and trauma-informed care. The roadmap emphasizes the importance of eliminating disparities and supporting the vulnerable and marginalized.  

Accountability for these core values requires the systematic collection and review of feedback from consumers, families, providers, and other stakeholders. To measure this, the accountable entity must define specific quality metrics across various areas. This not only ensures that the crisis system meets the needs of those it serves, but it also provides transparency to funders and other stakeholders. 

Following client flow across the care journey 

Another vital role for the accountable entity is to implement a system that can follow client-specific data through the crisis care journey, so stakeholders can understand patterns in the utilization of services. This helps ensure they don’t miss any potential clients.

A client monitoring data system includes, at minimum: 

  • A systemic level-of-care assessment

  • Resource identification, such as bed and transportation availability

  • Data system reporting through a single, easy-to-understand dashboard

  • Prompt reporting of any crisis encounters, ER visits, and hospital admissions to the client’s most frequently seen providers 

Monitoring throughput to deliver efficient service 

Each element of the crisis management system must operate in concert to respond to variations in demand. Continuous monitoring by the accountable entity is necessary to ensure that minor delays in one area don’t lead to larger, systemwide bottlenecks. This requires the entity to create capacity through adequate funding and staffing, have response plans for changes in demand, and develop solutions for systemic barriers. They also must define quality metrics that reflect expectations for timely care and efficient flow, such as those mentioned above.  

A single platform  

To achieve these goals, the accountable entity needs to implement a single shared technology solution that provides a holistic view of performance, keeps crisis centers up to date with guidelines and requirements, and prevents delays so that each caller receives immediate and appropriate assistance.  

988 and Crisis Management Planning: Strategies for Reducing Delays  

Delays that prevent clients from accessing help promptly can undermine crisis center efficacy. Potential consequences include crisis escalation, increased emotional distress, or a less productive dialogue with staff members. 

Avoiding delays is in the best interest of the client and the crisis center alike. Centers need to take a two-pronged approach to 988 and crisis management planning: training staff and building diverse teams, and streamlining operations so callers can be matched with services faster.  

Improve resources & training to facilitate better conversations  

Well-trained, highly effective staff help callers feel supported and connect them with the services they need. The skills and knowledge they bring can also reduce delays by resolving issues faster.  

Here are a few approaches to enhancing staff success.  

Assess the quality of your staff training 

Reevaluate the basic training you give your staff to make sure it’s providing them with the tools they need to be productive. Consider factors like:  

  • How active listening skills are taught and assessed 

  • How assessment of mental health conditions is performed and kept consistent 

  • What stress management training staff members receive 

  • Whether staff members know how to optimize the software they’re using 

Provide guidance in advanced approaches to crisis management 

Offering basic training and knowledge is just the first step in improving your crisis management planning and ensuring you have a team that can handle any call. Consider training around: 

  • Trauma-informed care: Teams need to provide care in a way that avoids triggering traumatic memories or re-traumatizing the client.  

  • Zero suicide/Suicide safer care: This approach to care prioritizes decreasing the incidence of suicide. Staff members learn strategies for providing immediate interventions to suicidal clients.  

  • Cultural competency and health equity: This training enables staff members to be more sensitive when responding to a person in crisis. 

  • Social determinants of health (SDOH): Staff members need to know how to screen for SDOH and understand the impact of a person’s living environment – including access to food and housing – on their mental health.  

  • Peer support: Hiring staff members from similar backgrounds to your clients can shorten the amount of time callers need to spend explaining their situation and encourage them to speak freely with your staff.  

Enhance operations for faster call handling 

Crisis management teams that are serious about reducing delays and connecting clients to appropriate care need to do the following: 

  • Streamline call routing and triage 

  • Implement real-time web chat, texting, or video calls 

  • Define and automate workflows 

  • Coordinate with providers who offer same-day access 

  • Analyze best practices from other industries

    • Many industries have refined approaches to distributing complex processes among a team of professionals. For example, The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention has developed a framework for applying principles from air traffic control to mental health crisis care.  

Back to top ↑


The Power of Crisis Management Software 

To improve crisis center management, you need a robust technological foundation. A comprehensive platform helps ensure you have optimal workflows and can provide timely, coordinated services to each client.  

Core Solutions’ Cx360 EHR platform offers just such a solution. Designed for 988 and other crisis call centers, it supports the system-of-care approach needed to bring stakeholders together so clients experiencing a crisis quickly receive the appropriate level of care and real-time care coordination. 

It accomplishes this through:  

  • Real-time care tracking and coordination, so everyone who speaks with a client knows what they need 

  • A centralized hub for appointment scheduling, bed tracking, and transportation coordination to provide seamless response and treatment 

  • Streamlined, efficient workflows to move clients through each step of their journey without delays 

  • Automated task management and call routing to increase staff efficiency 

  • Performance dashboards that can detect delays and identify bottlenecks 

The Core Solutions Cx360 platform supports all in-network and out-of-network care management coordination required of a 988 or other crisis call center. It’s the intuitive, secure way to power your crisis center.

Talk to us today to learn how Cx360 creates efficiencies for 988 and crisis management planning. 

Save this information for later.

Download the PDF version now.

Essential Role of Technology for Today’s 988 Crisis Centers