County hotline for behavioral health crises expands to 24/7 service

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County hotline for behavioral health crises expands to 24/7 service
Photo courtesy of Contra Costa County.

A crisis call center that began as a pilot project in Contra Costa County in 2021 will evolve into a 24 hours per day service starting Friday.

People facing a behavioral, mental health or substance abuse crisis in Contra Costa County will be able to access immediate support at all times of the day and night by calling the A3 Miles Hall Crisis Call Center at 844-844-5544. The A3 stands for Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime.

The hotline will operate 24/7 thanks to funding from the Measure X sales tax, according to County officials.

Currently, A3 responds to about 200 calls and dispatches 30 mobile teams per week. In 2022, over 2,900 callers were supported via the hotline, a number expected to grow to more than 4,500 people this year, the County said.

People in crisis can call A3 to talk to trained professionals who provide care over the phone and connections for follow-up care. A3 can also send teams to respond in person if needed, although most callers’ needs are resolved over the phone, according to County officials.

The third most common ambulance call in Contra Costa County involves behavioral health issues, which County officials cite as the reason a crisis call center is needed.

“Having round-the-clock mental health services available throughout Contra Costa has been a long-time need and we are proud that we can now provide these vital services at any time,” said Supervisor John Gioia, chair of the Board of Supervisors.

Learn more at cchealth.org/a3 or watch a video about the program.