Recognizing One Year of 988 and BIPOC Mental Health Month
A Message From Our CEO
This month marks one year since the launch of 988 – an extension of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Integral Care has been part of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline network since 2012. When someone calls the Lifeline from an area code covered by Integral Care, that call rolls to our Helpline team. Over the last year, our Helpline staff have answered 988 calls for the 76 counties we support, resolving 97% of calls over the phone.
To mark the one-year anniversary of the 988 Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) officials have been visiting 988 Call Centers across the country. Integral Care was honored to be one of four stops on their tour. Last month, they visited Austin for a roundtable discussion with Integral Care, Texas Health and Human Services, and city, county, and state leaders.
The group discussed milestones of the first year of 988, the future of 988, and the robust crisis continuum here in Travis County – including our community’s 911 mental health option. Monica Johnson, Director of 988, had this to say about Integral Care:
“People in Austin and Travis County have multiple access points to varying levels of mental health care, thus improving health outcomes, and reducing unnecessary use of jail, ERs and inpatient hospitalization. This is a model worth shining a light on for the rest of the country to see. You should all applaud it.”
We are so proud of our Helpline, Crisis Teams, and Outpatient Clinic Teams. Their compassion and dedication to providing immediate and ongoing care to those we serve have been critical in making the 988 launch a success. The collaborative nature of Integral Care has helped make us a national example of what it means to have “no wrong door” when it comes to supporting the mental health of our community.
As always, if you or someone you know needs help, free emotional support is available. Our compassionate team of mental health professionals provide immediate emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us day or night at 512-472-HELP (4357) or dial 988.
Chief Executive Officer
Past Transparencies sorted by year
Highlight: July is BIPOC Mental Health Month
July is BIPOC Mental Health Month, formally recognized as Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month. Discrimination, unequal access to care, a lack of culturally and linguistically competent care and additional stigma all contribute to mental health disparities for Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) communities. This observance serves as an opportunity to promote mental health among BIPOC communities and highlight the unique mental health struggles they face in the U.S.
Integral Care is committed to addressing these disparities across our system of care. Equity is one of our core values – we are dedicated to eradicating our own institutional racism and structural inequities, advancing a culture of inclusion, and supporting people of all identities. One of our FY23-25 Strategic Plan goals that guide Integral Care’s work is Build Equity. For us, this means:
- Building racial and health equity in the community and an inclusive environment for team members and providers
- Providing care that fits the diverse needs of all people we serve
- Cultivating a culturally adaptive, diverse workforce and provider network
- Using data to track progress and inform decision-making to advance equity
These efforts are paramount to ensuring that BIPOC communities in Austin-Travis County have access to high-quality mental health services responsive to their needs. Click here to explore a list of local and digital BIPOC resources. We invite you to share them with your networks.
BIPOC Mental Health Video Series
In this video series, Integral Care staff talk about mental health in different cultures. The videos are in multiple languages including Spanish, Mandarin, Urdu, Arabic and Hindi.
Spanish Community Forums
View recordings of our Spanish virtual community forums. Topics include preventing suicide among Hispanic youth and supporting families of people who have mental health challenges.
Mental Health America BIPOC Mental Health Month Resources
Mental Health America has compiled a list of educational and practical mental health resources for BIPOC communities.
Integral Care 24/7 Helpline | (512) 472-HELP (4357)
Free emotional support in many languages. Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Comprehensive Austin Mental Wellness Database and healing through art.
Asian Family Support Services of Austin | (877) 281-8371
Access to emergency shelter, housing, safety planning, counseling, healthcare navigation services and more. Offers toll-free 24-hour helpline in various languages.
Austin Asian Community Health Initiative
Improving the health & well-being of Asians in Central Texas through advocacy, education, and support.
Muslim Community Support Services
Resources for low-income people, refugees and victims of domestic violence.
Highlight: CEO Survey Reminder
Community feedback is an important part in the search process for Integral Care’s next CEO. Integral Care’s Board of Trustees invites you to share your thoughts on the qualities and strengths you’re looking for in the new CEO by taking a brief survey, which closes at 5pm on Tuesday, July 11th.
Highlight: Integral Care Staff Present at Texas Council Conference
Late last month, multiple Integral Care staff presented at the Texas Council of Community Centers’ 36th Annual Conference in Houston, Texas.
Tarissa Moss (pictured), Peer Support Specialist, Lily Wolff-Knuffke, Program Manager, Ingrid Perdigon Gomez, Program Manager, and Emily Hammer, School-Based Therapist Team Lead, presented the poster, “Improving Mental Health in School Aged Children through Summer Enrichment Activities.”
Nicole Warren, Helpline and Crisis Line Practice Manager, served on the panel, “988 Meets 911: A Powerful Collaboration.”
Highlight: Project SEARCH Connects IDD Students to Competitive Employment
Project SEARCH at Ascension Seton provides internship opportunities to students with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Austin ISD to learn work skills. The internships are individualized and focus on supporting students to develop vocational skills with a goal toward competitive employment. The students are supported by Ed Orozco, Integral Care IDD Employment Specialist, throughout their year-long rotation in various units at the hospital. Ed, along with a great group of staff from Ascension Seton and other Project Search partners, helped with the success of all students being competitively hired either at Ascension Seton or other community organizations. Through their determination, dedication, and hard work, these students have taken the first step of many toward a competitive employment career.
Bridging the Gap Sponsor Highlight
“2 Dine 4 Fine Catering was honored to work with Integral Care to support their mission to build the health and well-being of those in our community. During the pandemic, we saw the way mental health, behavioral issues and housing struggles can affect anyone in our community. Without Integral Care, these unmet public needs would continue to harm our neighbors and be an obstacle to the potential all around us. We were honored to be able to serve them as they serve our community.”
Save the Date: July BIPOC Mental Health Community Forum
Keep your eye out for an email announcing the date of our July virtual community forum focused on BIPOC mental health. More details to come soon.
July Together We Will Heal Forum
Join us on July 19th at 1:30pm for this month’s Together We Will Heal Forum on Re-entry into Society with Carl Hunter II, Executive Director of Building Promise USA.
Sun Radio Highlights Ask, Listen, Talk, Repeat Campaign
Michelle Pierson, Del Valle School-Based Program Manager, and William Malm of Austin Public Health recently spoke to Sun Radio about our joint campaign – Ask, Listen, Talk, Repeat – focused on children’s mental health.
Huge thanks to Austin Public Health, City of Austin, and Travis County for their partnership in this important effort! Listen to the interview here.
Do you want to order Ask, Listen, Talk, Repeat conversation cards for your organization? Click here to order 50 or more.
KUT, CBS, and KVUE Highlight Integral Care’s 988 Role
KUT, CBS Austin, and KVUE recently ran pieces highlighting the one-year anniversary of the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline and Integral Care’s role in our community and the area our call center staff serve: