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Graphic for the Veterans Crisis Line. It reads Veterans Cris Lins 1 800 273 8255 press 1

Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs

Veterans and Mental Health

VA is a pioneer in mental health research, high-quality, evidence-based treatment and access to high-quality care. We strive to maintain and improve the mental health and well-being of today's Veterans through excellence in health care, social services, education, and research. Learn more about VA's mental health services. In the last three years, VA has devoted more people, programs, and resources toward mental health services to serve the growing number of Veterans seeking mental health care and this marketing effort is designed to expand our reach to those who need our services the most. Learn more about VA's mental health services

VA's Mental Health Quick Facts

  • In 2011, more than 1.3 million Veterans received specialized mental health treatment from VA for mental health related issues.
  • VA has many entry points to care through the use of 300 Vet Centers, the Veterans Crisis Line, and integration of mental health services in the primary care setting.
  • VA's Veterans Crisis Line (1-800-273-TALK (8255), press 1) has been operational since August 2007 and has expanded to include a Chat Service and texting option for contacting the Crisis Line. It has made:
    • Over 680,000 calls and over 72,000 chat connections
    • Over 24,000 rescues of those in immediate suicidal crisis
    • Over 110,000 callers provided referral to a VA Suicide Prevention Coordinator
  • VA has expanded access, with longer clinic hours, telemental heath capability to deliver services, and standards that mandate rapid access to mental health services.
  • VA is working closely with the Department of Defense on different mental health strategies and programs.

VA Mental Health Program Highlights

Veterans Crisis Line

The Veterans Crisis Line (1-800-273-8255 press 1) connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring VA responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text (Text 838255). Veterans and their loved ones can call, chat online, and text message.

Mental Health Hiring Initiative

VA's Mental Health Hiring Initiative has initiated an aggressive Mental Health Hiring Initiative to add 1,600 mental health professionals, as well as 300 support staff, to its existing mental health workforce of over 20,000.

Mental Health Recovery Programs

VA's Mental Health Recovery Programs provides a number of unique psychosocial services and resources available to eligible Veterans who have schizophrenia or another serious mental illness through the mental health programs at VA Medical Centers (VAMC) around the country.

Coaching into Care

Coaching into Care is a free and confidential coaching service to help callers discover new ways to talk with their Veteran about their concerns and about treatment options.

Media Center

VA's Mental Health Programs in the News

Press Release


Connect with us

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  • Benefits:
  • Health Care:
    1-877-222-VETS (8387)
  • VA Inspector General:
  • Veterans Crisis Line:
    1-800-273-8255 Press 1


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