Mental Health Resources During a Pandemic

In communities across Texas, families are facing the challenges arising from the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and that creates stressors that are as unique to each individual as they are universal in their impact.

The Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute is committed to providing factual and reliable information regarding mental health resources during this crisis. It is critical to actively focus on your mental health as well as that of those in your care. The resources here represent a great place to start.

While we are all maintaining healthy spaces right now, it’s important to preserve our social connections. MMHPI’s Okay to Say™ campaign can provide you with ideas on staying mentally healthy and supporting friends and family. Visit okaytosay.org for more information.

We’ll keep this page current as information and guidance develop. Please check in often for the latest updates.

MMHPI is dedicated to helping Texas communities through this trying time in our history. We’ll get through this together.

General Information

Texas Health and Human Services has launched a 24/7 statewide mental health support line to help Texans experiencing anxiety, stress or emotional challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. People can call the Statewide COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll-free at 833-986-1919.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides general tips on managing anxiety and stress during COVID-19:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/coping.html

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) – Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health During an Outbreak:

https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Taking-Care-of-Your-Behavioral-Health-During-an-Infectious-Disease-Outbreak/sma14-4894

Harvard Medical School advice on coping with coronavirus anxiety:

https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/coping-with-coronavirus-anxiety-2020031219183

For Parents and Caregivers

National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) – Parent/Caregiver Guide to Helping Families Cope with Coronavirus:

https://www.nctsn.org/resources/parent-caregiver-guide-to-helping-families-cope-with-the-coronavirus-disease-2019

The Child Mind Institute has compiled resources on talking to children about COVID-19:

https://childmind.org/article/talking-to-kids-about-the-coronavirus/

National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) – Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource:

https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-climate-safety-and-crisis/health-crisis-resources/talking-to-children-about-covid-19-(coronavirus)-a-parent-resource

SAMHSA – Talking with Children: Tips for Caregivers, Parents, and Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreaks:

https://store.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/SAMHSA_Digital_Download/PEP20-01-01-006-508.pdf

For Healthcare Professionals and Providers

Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Provider Information:

https://hhs.texas.gov/services/health/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-covid-19-provider-information

CDC – Information for Healthcare Professionals:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/index.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fguidance-hcp.html

For Those in Need of Mental Health Services

For people with severe mental health needs, ensuring ongoing linkages to care is essential. HHSC contracts with 37 local mental health authorities (LMHAs) and two local behavioral health authorities (LBHAs) across Texas to deliver mental health services in our communities. A list of LMHAs and LBHAs in Texas can be found here:

https://hhs.texas.gov/services/mental-health-substance-use/mental-health-substance-use-resources/find-your-local-mental-health-or-behavioral-health-authority

A search for public resources by Texas county can be performed here:

https://hhs.texas.gov/about-hhs/find-us/where-can-i-find-services

HHSC – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Provider Information for People Receiving Services:

https://hhs.texas.gov/services/health/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-covid-19-information-people-receiving-services

Our Research and Analysis During the COVID-19 Pandemic

MMHPI’s policy-related work throughout this crisis is focused on the short- and long-term effects of the pandemic, while facilitating access to appropriate care within this evolving landscape. View our white papers and supplemental materials below to learn more.

MMHPI COVID-19 Response Briefings

Personal Protective Equipment and the Behavioral Health Workforce – March 23, 2020
Our briefing that focuses on the need for personal protective equipment (PPE) for the behavioral health and intellectual/developmental disability (IDD) workforce.

Planning Guide for County Officials Seeking to Reduce Jail Demand During Pandemic – March 24, 2020
A briefing by our Justice Policy Team for county officials to inform their efforts to prioritize jail bed use and admissions protocols in order to promote public safety by reducing the demand for jail space during the emergency.

MMHPI Regulatory and Reimbursement Newsletters

Letter to Providers: State & Federal Updates – April 3, 2020
With federal and state health care policies changing rapidly in response to COVID-19, MMHPI will be issuing newsletters to support providers as they navigate this new terrain. Read the latest edition above or see all Regulatory and Reimbursement Newsletters here.