EMERGENCY AND URGENT ASSISTANCE
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals. 1-800-273-8255. Available 24 hours everyday.
211 Helpline of Palm Beach/Treasure Coast
In times of crisis or for everyday needs … or if you just need someone to talk to … 211 is here for you!
TEXT MESSAGING ALSO AVAILABLE: TEXT YOUR CONCERNS & ZIPCODE TO 898211
211 is a community helpline and crisis hotline that provides suicide prevention, crisis intervention, information, assessment, and referral to community services for people of all ages.
Caring staff will listen to each individual’s situation to provide information on available social services, community services and resources that include food assistance, medical clinics, foreclosure prevention, parenting info on developmental concerns (Help Me Grow) & special needs, senior services that include free “Sunshine” daily calls, services for teens and more…
Individuals and families living in Indian River County, Martin County, Okeechobee County, Palm Beach County, and St. Lucie County can call 2-1-1 or if out of the area call (561) 383-1112 or 1 (866) 882-2991 to speak with a highly trained resource specialist. Calls to 211 HelpLine are Free, Confidential, and 24/7!
VETERANS CRISIS SUPPORT
Reach out to the confidential 24/7 service at the Veterans Crisis Line.
The Disaster Distress Helpline
1-800-985-5990, is a 24/7, 365 days-a-year, national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common reactions after a disaster. Dial 1-800-985-5990 or you can also call 2-1-1 to reach this line locally. More information for Disaster Survivors: Click here to learn more about the Disaster Distress Helpline
Listing of national resources useful in various types of disasters.
Being Prepared for a Mental Health Crisis
No one wants to worry about the possibility of a crisis, but they do happen. That doesn’t mean you have to feel powerless. Many healthcare providers require patients to create a crisis plan, and may suggest that it be shared with friends and family. Ask your loved one if he has developed a plan. …
NAMI COVID-19 Resource And Information Guide
NAMI released the NAMI COVID-19 Resource and Information Guide to answer frequently asked questions regarding the intersection between Coronavirus, or COVID-19, and people affected by mental illness, their caregivers and loved ones. The guide features FAQs on a variety of topics from managing anxiety and social isolation to accessing health care and medications.
La Guía COVID-19 de información y recursos está disponible en español. Tiene información sobre preguntas frecuentes y recursos para que encuentres apoyo para ti y tus seres queridos. Incluye temas relacionados a la salud mental, como encontrar comunidades de apoyo en línea, ayuda financiera, y más. Para acceder, presiona el botón descarga (en español).
NON-EMERGENCY RESOURCES AND INFORMATION
Following are some statewide, Martin County, and surrounding areas resources relevant to mental health, mental illness and co-occurring disorders (mental illness + substance abuse). We strive to keep this information current and correct; if you find a phone number, link or information that is not accurate, or you know of another resource that should be added to this list, please let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Local Mental Health Agencies & Programs
Harbor Network Drop-in Center – Stuart
The Stuart Harbor Network center offers peer support groups and other programming. Please call the center for more information about current offerings. 618 SE Central Parkway, Stuart; Phone: 772 287 4545 Please click here to view Harbor Network’s current monthly calendar.
Drop-In Centers are peer-operated, recovery oriented environments in the community that provide a safe, friendly, supportive and confidential place where people with similar experiences are not judged. Open 365 days of the year, the Centers are designed to empower consumers to change the quality of their lives. The members are respected and offer peer support to one another. Recreational and social activities are offered to all members to promote a supportive, active and empowering atmosphere as members actively participate in their recovery. Other drop-in centers in our area operated by Mental Health Association in Indian River County are in Okeechobee and Vero Beach:
Welcome House Drop-in Center – Okeechobee: 242 Hwy 441 SE; Phone: 863 467 1026
Our House Network – Vero Beach: 2183 Ponce de Leon Circle; 772 778 4444
Coalition For Independent Living Options (CILO.org)
CILO’s mission is “Promoting Independence for People with Disabilities.” CILO provides a broad range of services for persons of any age with any type of disability in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, and Okeechobee counties.
The purpose of CILO is twofold – to assist individuals with disabilities in reaching their goals for independence and to create societal change to promote acceptance and opportunities for people with disabilities to be fully included in all aspects of community life. To that end, CILO provides a broad range of services for persons of any age with any type of disability in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, and Okeechobee counties.
The majority of CILO’s staff and board members have disabilities. Together we assisted more than 5,000 families in the past year — for free!
For help filing an initial Social Security benefits application or an appeal call 561-966-4288 ext. 107 or email email@example.com.
To sign up for food stamps and Medicaid, Medicaid Waiver, Medicare premium assistance and Healthcare District applications call Rebecca Jonguitud at 561-966-4288 ext, 109 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Education (ESE Students): Our advocates meet with you and your child to determine what they need to get the most out of school and to prepare them to eventually live independently. If needed we then will meet with teachers, school officials and committees to explain federal law requiring the accommodations that would benefit your child. In Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast, contact Darlene Williamson at 561-966-4288 extension 119 or by email email@example.com.
New Horizons of the Treasure Coast and Okeechobee
http://nhtcinc.org – Community Mental Health, Primary Care and Substance Abuse Services Provider. Main campus on Midway Road in Ft. Pierce, with locations in Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee and St. Lucie Counties. New Horizons provides a safety net for those in crisis, outreach programs to promote resilience and recovery, and community education to help our community achieve health in both mind and body.
CONTACT: Crisis Services, 24/7: 772-468-3909; General Information (toll free): 888-468-5600; All phone numbers, including local offices: http://nhtcinc.org/contact-new-horizons/
Helping People Succeed
http://www.hpsfl.org – Helping People Succeed provides choices and opportunities that help children, families and adults improve their quality of life through education, training, and employment. Our passion is building successful families and futures–one life at a time!
Successful Families Programs: BABY STEPS, BRAIN Program, Developmental Interventions, Pre-School Behavioral Services, Baby Calming Techniques, Infant Massage, Infant & Toddler Social Communication, Music & Movement, Parent-Child Playgroups, Healthy Families Martin-Okeechobee.Behavioral Services: Autism Services, Children’s Community Mental Health Program
Suncoast Mental Health
http://www.suncoastmentalhealth.org – Suncoast Mental Health Center, Inc. provides best-practice and research-based assessment, counseling and supportive services to children and families in the Treasure Coast area. Suncoast Mental Health organization offers service provisions across settings. Its treatment didactics range from traditional to non-traditional treatment. We provide services in four counties: St. Lucie, Martin, Indian River and Okeechobee. The agency’s goal is to offer clinical and case management services in a variety of settings including but not limited to community, home-based, church, activity centers, school and/or etc. The organization has evolved as one of the community’s leading providers having developed contractual relations between the Department of Children & Families, Medicaid and other managed care providers. The organization has been one of the leading agencies on the Treasure Coast who provide therapeutic and case management treatment services for at-risk children and families. Since 2009, we have rendered our services to over four thousand children.
Contact: St. Lucie County – Main Office: 772.489.4726
Indian River County: 772.564.8616
Martin County: 772.221.8585
Okeechobee County: 863.824.0300
Adult Services include: Therapeutic Services, Psychiatric Evaluations and Medication Management. Offers Individual Office Based Counseling, Home Based Counseling, Therapeutic Groups
Tykes & Teens – Mental Health Services for Youth
http://www.tykesandteens.org – Supporting and strengthening our community through quality prevention, education and social-emotional healing services for children and their families. Tykes & Teens is dedicated to strengthening families and preventing suicide, substance use and other dangerous behaviors by ensuring that all children have access to high quality mental health services. This includes counseling as well as a wide range of specialized programming that helps families cope with issues such as sexual abuse, domestic violence, bullying, school suspension and more. Tykes & Teens provides outpatient services at three locations in Martin County: Palm City, Jensen Beach, and Hobe Sound, as well as on site counseling in 13 Martin County schools, and in the Okeechobee School District. Select services are also available in St. Lucie and Indian River Counties. Our Prevention Services Division administers a youth alcohol prevention curriculum in all Martin County middle schools, and has provided more than 500 free community events since 2010. These events are carefully designed to educate parents on trending topics and to increase protective assets that are proven to help youth avoid drugs, alcohol and other dangerous behaviors, and to encourage positive and healthy choices.
We are a Medicaid provider and accept most insurance. Counseling services are available on a sliding scale for those without insurance. As a nonprofit agency, Tykes & Teens provides approximately $700,000 in free counseling and other services to the community each year. The support of the community is vital in ensuring that no child in need of services is turned away. At Tykes & Teens we believe that we cannot wait for another tragedy to happen—locally or nationally—to make affordable, accessible mental health services a priority.
CONTACT: Main location: 3577 SW Corporate Parkway, Palm City, FL 34990; Phone: (772) 220-3439
Additional outpatient locations: 3428 NE Sugar Hill Avenue, Jensen Beach and 8142 SE Federal Highway, Hobe Sound.
Stuart VA Outpatient Clinic – Stuart
3501 SE Willoughby Blvd, Stuart; Phone: (772) 288-0304
Mental health assessments, screening, and therapies for a limited number of mental health diagnoses. (Complex or more specialized treatment is referred to the Medical Center at West Palm Beach, VAMC). Monday-Friday, 8am-4:30pm. Pre-registration is required.
ARC of Martin County
https://www.arcmc.org ARC provides support and assistance to children and adults with a variety of challenges, including: intellectual disabilities, autism, Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, epilepsy, and other related developmental disabilities. Through a full spectrum of programs and medical technology, we assist with education, skill training, community involvement, physical and behavioral therapy, and developing self-sufficiency for each and every individual.
Area Hospitals with Mental Health Services/Baker Act Receiving Facilities
Adults and children, public facility:
New Horizons of the Treasure Coast; 4500 W Midway Rd, Ft Pierce; St Lucie County; (772) 468-5600
Adults and teens, private facility:
Coral Shores Behavioral Health – Stuart: Private mental health hospital for adults, teens to seniors, in south Stuart. 5995 SE Community Dr, Stuart, FL; Phone 772-403-4000 or 844-507-9654. https://coralshoresbehavioral.com Coral Shores Behavioral Health is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Adults only, private facilities:
Port St Lucie Hospital; 2550 SE Walton Rd, Port St Lucie; St Lucie County; (772) 335-0400
St Lucie Medical Center; 1800 SE Tiffany, Port St Lucie; St Lucie County; (772) 335-4000 / (772) 807-6950
Lawnwood Regional Medical Center & Heart Institute/ Lawnwood Pavilion; 1700 S 23rd St, Ft Pierce; St Lucie County; (772) 461-4000
Information about Florida’s Mental Health Act, the “Baker Act”
Definition: The Baker Act defines “involuntary examination” as an examination performed under sections 394.463, 397.6772, 397.679, 397.6798, or 397.6811, Florida Statutes (F.S.) to determine whether an individual qualifies for involuntary services. “Involuntary services” means court‐ordered outpatient services or inpatient placement for mental health treatment pursuant to sections 394.4655 or 394.467, F.S.
The Florida Mental Health Act, or “Baker Act,” in Florida’s Legislature: Statutes governing the treatment of mental illness in Florida date back to 1874. Below are significant revisions that have taken place since that time:
- The 1971 Legislature created the Florida Mental Health Act, commonly referred to as the Baker Act. This law substantially strengthened the due process and civil rights of individuals receiving services and treatment in the state’s public mental health system.
- The 1996 Legislature further amended the Baker Act to offer greater protections to individuals seeking voluntary admission, to strengthen guardian advocacy provisions, to expand notice requirements, and to specify provisions relating to suspension and withdrawal of receiving and treatment facility designations.
- The 2016 Legislature enacted Senate Bill 12 (SB 12), Chapter 2016‐241, Laws of Florida. This law made significant changes to the Baker Act to focus on the provision of behavioral health services for individuals experiencing co‐occurring disorders.
[Source: Florida DCF website]
Martin County Crisis Services – Courts
The Martin County Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller’s office provides the following information on special services relating to mental health and substance abuse. This process is available for family/friends who believe a loved one needs emergency help and detention to go through the court system rather than through law enforcement.
The Baker Act and Marchman Act are means of providing individuals with emergency services and temporary detention for examination for mental health assessment and stabilization for substance abuse. These types of proceedings are confidential and are not public record. (Continue reading: http://www.martinclerk.com/index.asp?SEC=C2A8980E-E627-45AD-9B0D-251CCC10A723&DE=FD9F05E1-EACF-486F-9F0B-B437F5262D6E&Type=B_BASIC)
Department of Children and Families: Crisis Services – Baker Act
DCF provides extensive information pertaining to the Baker Act and how it is implemented with children. Includes the Baker Act manual (2014) and list of Baker Act receiving facilities. https://myflfamilies.com/service-programs/samh/
Mental Health Resources from the Florida Department of Children and Families
About DCF’s role in Florida’s mental health:
Chapter 394, Florida Statutes (F.S.) states, “The Department of Children and Families is directed to evaluate, research, plan and recommend to the Governor and Legislature programs designed to reduce the occurrence, severity and duration, and disabling aspects of mental, emotional and behavior disorders.”
In other words, the Florida Department of Children and Families Mental Health Program Office is responsible for planning, managing and evaluating a statewide program of mental health services and supports, including community programs, crisis services, state residential treatment facilities, and children’s mental health services. The public mental health system is funded by federal block grant dollars and the Florida Legislature.
Though the state directly operates some of its mental health treatment facilities, Florida’s community mental health system is completely privatized. Public funds are contracted through local Mental Health Program Offices, mostly with non-profit local Community Mental Health Centers. People who need services get them by going to those providers directly – the state mental health program offices do not provide services.
[See link below to Southeast Florida Behavioral Health Network, which oversees and funds services in our area.]
Get Help Offers information on resources by county: http://myflfamilies.com/service-programs/substance-abuse/get-help
Adult Mental Health http://www.myflfamilies.com/service-programs/mental-health/adult-mental-health
Children’s Mental Health http://www.myflfamilies.com/service-programs/mental-health/childrens-mental-health-services
Marchman Act: The Marchman Act provides for voluntary admissions and involuntary assessment, stabilization, and treatment of adults and youth who are severely impaired due to substance abuse. Find our more information.
Baker Act Manual: The Baker Act provides legal procedures for mental health examination and treatment. Find our more information.
State Mental Health Treatment Facilities
- Florida State Hospital (FSH)
- Northeast Florida State Hospital (NEFSH)
- North Florida Evaluation and Treatment Center (NFETC)
- South Florida Evaluation and Treatment Center, operated by Correct Care LLC
- South Florida State Hospital, Operated by Correct Care LLC
- Treasure Coast Treatment Facility, operated by Correct Care LLC
- West Florida Community Care Center, operated by Lakeview Center
The Baker Act and Children
The Florida Legislature passed House Bill 1121 (HB 1121) during the 2017 Session, which was signed into law by Governor Rick Scott on June 23, 2017 as Chapter 2017‐151, Laws of Florida. This law created a task force within the Department of Children and Families (Department) to address the issue of involuntary examination of minors age 17 years and younger. The statute requires the task force to:
- Analyze data on the initiation of involuntary examinations of minors;
- Research the root causes of any trends in such involuntary examinations;
- Identify and evaluate options for expediting the examination process; and
- Identify recommendations for encouraging alternatives to and eliminating inappropriate initiations of such examinations. . . .
Florida Division of Vocational Rehabilitation
http://www.rehabworks.org – Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a federal-state program that helps people who have physical or mental disabilities get or keep a job. VR is committed to helping people with disabilities find meaningful careers.Our Mission is “to help people with disabilities find and maintain employment and enhance their independence.” Our Vision is “to become the first place people with disabilities turn when seeking employment and a top resource for employers in need of qualified employees.”
In addition to the general customer employment program, VR has additional specific programs designed to help eligible people with disabilities become employed, including mental health programs. VR coordinates services with available mental health centers, programs, and service providers to assist individuals with mental or emotional disabilities in becoming employed.
Phone: (772) 221-4095
Phone: (772) 873-6550
Phone: (863) 462-5044
Criminalizing the Seriously Mentally Ill: Two Decades Later
In 1992, Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, in cooperation with the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI), published “Criminalizing the Seriously Mentally Ill: The Abuse of Jails as Mental Hospitals.”
The study reported that 7.2% of all jail inmates at that time were seriously mentally ill and that the problem was getting worse. The study also detailed the problems that occur when seriously mentally ill individuals are incarcerated, problems both for these individuals and for jail personnel. (The reprint of the November 1992 Health Letter article summarizing that study appears on page 3, link below.) Given that almost two decades have passed since the report was released, we thought it would be useful to review what has happened regarding this issue, especially during the last 10 years.
The number of seriously mentally ill individuals in jails has increased sharply during the last two decades. As state psychiatric hospitals have increasingly been shut down, more individuals with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder wander the streets untreated. Many commit minor crimes, such as shoplifting, but a few commit major crimes, including homicides, thus landing in jail. By 2000, the percentage of jail inmates with serious mental illnesses had increased to at least 10% and has now risen to 20% or higher. … [Public Citizen Health Letter, July 2011, Vol. 27, No. 7]