Do You or Someone You Know Need Help with a Crisis?

CALL 911 if this is a medical or life threatening emergency.  If you need the police, ask for a CIT officer. They have received extra training on handling these situations.  If this is NOT a medical or life threatening emergency, look in the directory below for resources in your county.

NC Crisis Solutions Initiative

Healthcare, government, law enforcement, and community leaders in North Carolina have come together to find better ways to help people in a mental health or substance abuse crisis. The Crisis Solutions Coalition is working to decrease the use of emergency departments and to increase the use of other services to help individuals quickly resolve the crisis and get back to their homes, families, friends, and work.

The Crisis Solutions Initiative is addressing the numbers of avoidable visits and the long stays in emergency departments for people who are looking there for help in a behavioral health crisis.  The initiative is focusing on Identifying and implementing the best known strategies for crisis care. The initiative is building partnerships between hospitals, service providers and other community responders. With earlier intervention strategies that prevent crisis altogether, each community in North Carolina can benefit from strengthened supports to help people.

Fact sheet about North Carolina’s mental health and substance abuse challenges.
In-depth overview of the new Crisis Solutions Initiative.

Solutions News

DHHS continues to spread Mental Health First Aid throughout NC

MHFA graphicDHHS is pleased to announce plans to provide another (Adult) Mental Health First Aid Instructor Training, hosted by Cardinal Innovations in Chapel Hill, NC on October 19 – 23, 2015.

This will be the seventh DHHS-sponsored instructor training in North Carolina and will continue the commitment to implementing Mental Health First Aid as part of Governor McCrory’s NC Center for Safer Schools and the NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services’ Crisis Solutions Initiative.
Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental illnesses, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common supports. Like CPR, Mental Health First Aid uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect persons to the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. Mental Health First Aid is included on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP).

If you, or someone you know, is interested in becoming an Adult Mental Health First Aid Instructor in North Carolina, please see the attached application on the MH First Aid page for more information

For more information about Mental Health First Aid, see
For questions regarding NC’s Mental Health First Aid initiatives, contact

DHHS Piloting Case Management for Individuals in Transition

June 18, 2015 — Four Local Management Entities/Managed Care Organizations (LME/MCOs) and their provider partners will pilot Critical Time Intervention, a program that assists adults with mental illness who are going through a transition phase in their recovery process.

Critical Time Intervention is a focused, time-limited approach to case management that connects people with community supports as they transition into housing from homelessness, or from institutional settings, such as prisons and hospitals, into ongoing community-based services. Critical Time Intervention teams include licensed clinicians and certified peer-support specialists. The evidence-based practice supports people with a serious mental illness, or who have experienced chronic homelessness. It focuses on recovery, psychiatric rehabilitation and full community inclusion, and is recognized by behavioral health professionals across the United States and internationally as a cutting edge case management model.

“DHHS understands the importance of an evidence-based case management support system to assist individuals going through critical transitions,” said  DHHS Secretary Aldona Wos, M.D. “This patient-centered approach gives people increased likelihood for successful transitions back to their communities.”

Federal block grant funds, dedicated to the Crisis Solutions Initiative, have been awarded to the four LME/MCO’s in the amount of $365,000 each for State Fiscal Year 2015 and 2016 to establish the service.

Selected programs and a brief description of funded services are:

Courtney Cantrell, NC Division of MH/DD/SAS Director,  speaks at the Gaston CTI Community Celebration.  (Photo courtesy of Partners Behavioral Health)

Courtney Cantrell, NC Division of MH/DD/SAS Director,
speaks at the Gaston CTI Community Celebration.
(Photo courtesy of Partners Behavioral Health)

  • Alliance Behavioral Healthcare – Will focus on individuals being released from jail in Cumberland County.
  • CoastalCare – Will focus on individuals who are frequently in crisis in emergency departments in New Hanover and Onslow counties.
  • Cardinal Innovations Healthcare Solutions – Will focus on sustaining and expanding the existing Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust grant-funded team with expansion targeted to rural communities in Alamance, Caswell and Person counties.
  • Partners Behavioral Health Management – Will focus on individuals who have serious mental illness with housing needs, including those in transition from adult care and other congregate settings in Gaston County.  Read about the Gastonia community celebration kick-off event here:   Gaston Gazette article
Gaston CTI Community Celebration June 16, 2015  (Photo courtesy of Partners Behavioral Health)

Gaston CTI Community Celebration
June 16, 2015
(Photo courtesy of Partners Behavioral Health)

The Division of Mental Health/Developmental Disabilities/Substance Abuse Services has contracted with the UNC-Behavioral Healthcare Resources Program for training and technical assistance for Critical Time Intervention.

More information on Critical Time Intervention may be found at and at