Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Behavioral Health Help Line?
The Behavioral Health Help Line (BHHL) connects individuals and families to the full range of treatment services for mental health and substance use offered in Massachusetts, including outpatient, urgent, and immediate crisis care. Call for real-time support, initial clinical assessment, and connection to the right evaluation and treatment.
How does it work?
When I contact the BHHL, who answers?
The BHHL is staffed by trained clinicians and certified peer specialists to support every caller’s needs. Every call, text, or chat conversation includes follow up by trained clinicians, and staff will remain on the line with you until you are connected to the help you need.
Who can use the BHHL?
Everyone! The BHHL is for anyone in Massachusetts, including LGBTQIA+, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing, individuals with disabilities, and individuals whose first language is not English.
If I do not speak English, can I call?
The BHHL is available in more than 200 languages. Individuals who are Deaf or hard of hearing can also use the BHHL by contacting MassRelay at 711.
How much does it cost, and do I need to have health insurance?
The BHHL is free and available to all Massachusetts residents, even if you do not have insurance.
If I’m concerned about my child or friend, can I call to get help for them?
Yes – you can call to get help for yourself or for someone you care about, including children and other family members.
I’ve tried to get help before, and it didn’t work out. How is this different?
A trained, caring staff member will work with you to figure out what treatment may be helpful to you and will help you navigate the process. They and will stay on the line with you until you have been connected to the help that best fits your individual needs and will follow up with you afterward to make sure that your needs are being met.
Will I be able to access services or treatment in my own community?
Yes. The BHHL connects people to treatment in their community, including one of the new Community Behavioral Health Centers (CBHCs) across the state. The BHHL uses a comprehensive directory of mental health and substance use treatment providers.
What kinds of mental health or substance use issues can I call about?
The BHHL can help with any mental health or substance use concern. Maybe you’re sad or anxious, or worried about drug or alcohol use. Even if you’re not quite sure what the problem is or what kind of help you need, the BHHL staff will listen and connect you with care for yourself or a loved one.
For a mental health crisis, should I go to the emergency room or call the BHHL?
The BHHL is available 24/7 for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis and can directly connect you with crisis support in your community. The BHHL connects callers to 911 when needed for immediate safety. You can also visit a Community Behavioral Health Center (CBHCs) in your area for crisis intervention.