Mental Health Support New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home
While our City stays home to stop the spread of coronavirus, New Yorkers can access a range of mental health services by phone or online. If you or someone you care about needs support, we encourage you to reach out to the programs below. Help is available. Check back often for updates.
Call 911 for safety or medical emergencies
Accessing Mental Health Support
Cost: Many mental health programs listed below are free to New Yorkers, regardless of insurance coverage or immigration status. For programs with costs, New York State has issued an emergency regulation requiring insurance companies to waive deductibles, copayments (copays), or coinsurance for in-network telehealth visits, including mental health services. High-quality, low-cost and no-cost mental health services are also guaranteed for NYC Care members. New Yorkers who do not qualify for or cannot afford health insurance can click here to enroll in NYCCare.nyc or call 646-NYC-Care (646-692-2273).
Internet access: New Yorkers can access many mental health resources online during the COVID-19 outbreak. Visit this page to find free WiFi access locations, from Altice and Charter, providers that have opened their Wi-Fi hotspots to all users, not only subscribers.
Coping and Mental Well-Being During the COVID-19 Outbreak
An infectious illness outbreak such as COVID-19 can be stressful to you, your loved ones and your friends. It is natural to feel overwhelmed, sad, anxious and afraid. You may also experience other symptoms of distress, such as trouble sleeping.
To reduce your stress and help manage the situation, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene recommends that you:
Try to remain positive.
Remind yourself of your strengths.
Connect with friends and loved ones:
Go outside and get exercise, if you are not sick. Remember to practice good hygiene and physical distancing. Walking, running and bicycling are healthy activities that do not require close contact with others or shared equipment.
Identify what you are feeling and use healthy coping skills:
- Is It Anxiety, a Panic Attack or COVID-19?
- Coping With Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks
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- Coping With Thoughts of Suicide During the COVID-19 Outbreak
Recognize feelings of loss are normal and there are ways to cope:
- Grief and Loss During the COVID-19 Outbreak
- Managing Grief Over the Death of a Loved One During the COVID-19 Outbreak
- Grief and Loss in the Workplace During COVID-19
- Tips for helping others grieve after death, job loss, or loss of health due to illness, from the New York State Office of Mental Health
Visit NYC Well’s website, which offers a number of well-being and emotional support applications that can help you cope. If your symptoms of stress become overwhelming, reach out for support and help. You can contact NYC Well, a confidential helpline for mental health and substance misuse services. Trained counselors can provide you with support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in over 200 languages. CALL: 1-888-NYC-Well (692-9355), TEXT: “Well” to 65173, or CHAT ONLINE at nyc.gov/nycwell. Services include:
- Crisis counseling
- Peer support
- Short-term counseling
- Mobile crisis teams
- Connection to ongoing mental health and substance misuse services
Call the New York State’s COVID-19 Emotional Support Helpline at 844-863-9314 to talk to specially trained volunteer professionals. They are available to listen, support and offer referrals from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week.
Mental Health Resources for Aging New Yorkers
If you feel lonely or isolated or have questions about mental health services you currently receive through the NYC Department for the Aging, call the Aging Connect hotline: call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469). The Aging Connect hotline also provides information for caregivers.
Mental Health Resources for Veterans
If you are a veteran living in New York, or New Jersey, you can get trauma counseling and crisis intervention support. Call 311 to get connected to these services; in an emergency, call 911. Veterans can also access mental health support by calling the Veterans Crisis Line: 800-273-8255.
Additional Resources for Veterans
Up-to-date information on COVID-19’s implications for veterans from Federal, State, and City agencies, compiled by the NYC Department of Veterans’ Services. Veterans can also subscribe to a weekly newsletter featuring the latest news and information regarding COVID-19’s impact on the veteran community by clicking here.
Veterans and their families can receive information about funeral honors program, housing support services and constituent services via firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone (212-416-5250).
Mental Health Resources for Students and Young People
Mental health support and resources are available for all students and families during the COVID-19 crisis, from the Department of Education.
The School Mental Health Program is working with its community providers to offer tele-health services, which use health insurance, Medicaid, or offer a sliding scale for billing. If you need help obtaining support for your student, please reach out to your school’s Parent Coordinator, Guidance Counselor, or School Social Worker. You can also contact any of the community-based organizations listed on the Department of Education’s guide to Mental Health Telehealth Contacts for COVID-19. For help identifying the right questions to ask, or talking to school staff, visit the Children’s Health Resource and Training Center.
To get mental health help immediately, students and their families should contact NYC Well: text “WELL” to 65173, call 1-888-NYC-WELL (692-9355), or chat now.
Additionally, all students and families can access remote social emotional learning tools for all age groups from the NYC Department of Education. To support remote learning for students, the DOE is lending internet-enabled iPads. If you did not already get one for your NYC student, fill out the Request Form.
In order to successfully fight COVID-19, our first responders, health care providers, transit workers, and other key personnel must be able to come to work. Children of these front-line workers can be safely cared for in Regional Enrichment Centers, which offer three daily hot meals, remote learning time with teachers, activities like art, music, and physical education, and social and emotional support. Information on Regional Enrichment Centers is available here.
The NYC Department of Youth and Community Development is continuing to provide services, including mental health support, for young people in Runaway and Homeless Youth Residences and Drop-In Centers. If you have questions about programming or service modifications, call DYCD Youth Connect at 1-800-246-4646 or 1-646-343-6800 or email DYCDCOVID19@dycd.nyc.gov.
Additional Resources for Students and Young People
Youth and families across NYC can stay connected to the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development with fun dance, music, art, and filmmaking activities online. Sign up for activities that interest you here and text (347) 349-4361 to get updates directly to your phone.
Virtual activities for teens, ranging from NBA league passes to free practice for the SAT or HSE to free subscriptions to workout apps, is available from Growing Up NYC’s Fun at Home initiative. Text FUN to 97-743 to get a heads up when new free subscriptions are added, updates on summer activities, and other resources to help you through physical distancing.
Mental Health Resources for Parents and Caregivers
Parents and caregivers looking for remote mental health support for children aged 0 to 5 can contact the nearest clinic participating in the Early Childhood Mental Health Network, overseen by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene:
- Bronx North: The Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services: 1- 844-663-2255 (844-ONE-CALL)
- Bronx South: Association to Benefit Children: 929-288-4320
- Brooklyn (Northern and Eastern): OHEL Children’s Home and Family Services 800-603-6435 (800-603-OHEL)
- Manhattan: Northside Center for Child Development: 212-426-3400
- Queens: The Child Center of New York: 718-530-6892
- Staten Island: Staten Island Mental Health Society, a division of Richmond University Medical Center 718-448-9775, ext. 551
Family Resource Centers, overseen by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, provide individual and group-based family support services to parents/caregivers of children and youth (birth- age 24) who have or are at risk for developing emotional, behavioral, or mental health challenges. Contact the nearest clinic for remote support:
- Bronx North: 718-220-0456 / Bronx South: 718-220-3868
- Brooklyn North: 877-425-8133 / Brooklyn South: 347-394-5186
- Manhattan North: 212-410-1820 / Manhattan South: 212-964-5253
- Queens West: 718- 651-1960 / Queens East: 347-644-5711
- Staten Island: 718-698-5307
Resources for parents and families to care for themselves, manage stress, and proactively develop children’s social and emotional skills during COVID-19, from the NYC Department of Education
Tips for parents and caregivers to support children in managing stress and anxiety during COVID-19, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Tips for caregivers of older adults to manage their own anxiety during the COVID-19 outbreak, from the New York State Office of Mental Health
Additional Resources for Parents and Caregivers
Information for parents and caregivers including child care assistance, an FAQ for parents and caretakers regarding ACS involvement during the COVID-19 crisis, the status of Family Court, and how to talk to pre-school and school-age children about the coronavirus, from the NYC Administration for Children’s Services
Mental Health Resources for People Harmed by Violence, Crime or Abuse
Safe Horizon operates NYC’s 24-hour hotline: 1-800-621-4673. You can also chat with a Safe Horizon advocate, who can offer information, advocacy and support through SafeChat. The latest information on hours and how to access this service is available here.
For anyone needing resources to help themselves or a loved one experiencing dating, domestic, or gender-based violence, you can visit the Resources for Survivors During COVID-19 webpage. For immediate safety planning, shelter assistance, mental health support, and other resources, you can call New York City Family Justice Centers by phone, Monday to Friday, from 9:00am – 5:00pm:
- Bronx: 718-508-1220
- Brooklyn: 718-250-5113
- Manhattan: 212-602-2800
- Queens: 718-575-4545
- Staten Island: 718-697-4300
During evenings and weekends, call NYC’s 24-hour hotline: 1-800-621-4673.
Calendar of events, including virtual town halls and bystander intervention trainings, to support communities facing heightened levels of discrimination and harassment as a result of COVID-19 stigma, from the NYC Commission on Human Rights.
Mental Health Resources for People with Disabilities
Resources for people with disabilities, including mental health support, during the COVID-19 crisis, from the NYC Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities. For help with disability-specific concerns you or your organization have, contact the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities directly by calling 212-788-2830, using this online contact form, or via videophone (ASL) at 646 – 396 – 5830.
Mental Health Resources for City Government Employees
Support for New York City government employees during the COVID-19 crisis, including the NYC Employee Assistance Program, from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Labor Relations
Mental health support for New York City Police Department employees, including internal Department resources and external resources
Additional COVID-19 Support from the City of New York
For the latest information and resources, or to self-report symptoms and self-isolation status, visit the NYC COVID-19 Citywide Information Portal.
New York City is opening COVID-19 testing sites citywide, prioritizing those most at risk. Call 1-888-ONEMED1 or go to onemedical.com and use the code NYCCARE30 for more information.
Complete list of city agency service suspensions and reductions during the COVID-19 crisis. For additional information, call 311
If you cannot go out to get food, no one can bring you food, and you are not able to use private delivery options, New York City will deliver emergency meals to you in the coming days. Visit NYC Food Delivery Assistance to check your eligibility and sign up.
Taxi and Limousine Commission-licensed drivers can sign up here to deliver food to those most in need during the COVID-19 crisis.
SUBSTANCE MISUSE CONCERNS
For Staten Island residents, Staten Island HOPE is a one-stop-shop for those battling addiction, those with a loved one who is struggling. For the most up-to-date information during the COVID-19 crisis, or if you or someone you love is in need of assistance in their recovery journey, call 917-334-8019 or email Floyd.Miller@rcda.nyc.gov.
PHONE AND INTERNET ACCESS
Altice and Charter have opened their Wi-Fi hotspots to all users, not only subscribers. Visit this page to see many of the locations throughout the city where you can find free Wi-Fi access, if necessary. More information on essential telecommunications services – cable television, phone, and internet services – during the COVID-19 outbreak, from the NYC Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications.
EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT
Help for people who may be unemployed due to COVID-19 – including food, financial, rent, and employment assistance – from NYC Emergency Management
Information for jobseekers, including how to access remote Workforce1 career services, from the NYC Department of Small Business Services
New York State has enacted a law providing benefits to workers impacted by mandatory or precautionary orders of quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. If your employer doesn’t comply with this law, you have the right to file a complaint.
BENEFITS AND HOUSING
Apply to receive benefits while staying home, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Cash Assistance (CA), from the NYC Human Resources Administration
Low-income New York City residents may be eligible for up to $900 in financial assistance to cover funeral expenses for a deceased low-income New York City resident family member or friend, from the NYC Human Resources Administration
Information on COVID-19 and rent hardships, Section 8, and meal delivery for residents from the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA)
Tenants’ rights during the COVID-19 crisis, from the NYC Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants
All eviction proceedings in New York City are suspended indefinitely. For more information, visit the NYC Department of Investigation (DOI). Your landlord cannot evict you, kick you out, or ask you to leave your apartment for having COVID-19 or for being under home-quarantine. You will still need to pay rent during quarantine or any time in a medical facility.
For low-income New Yorkers in imminent risk of entering the New York City shelter system who want to remain stably housed in their communities, Homebase can help you make a personalized plan to overcome an immediate housing crisis and achieve housing stability. During the COVID-19 outbreak, services are conducted by phone.
BUSINESS OWNERS AND OPERATORS
Tips on dealing with grief and loss in the workplace, from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Resources for Taxi and Limousine Commission-licensed drivers, vehicle owners and operators during the COVID-19 crisis from the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission. Taxi and Limousine Commission-licensed drivers can sign up here to deliver food to those most in need during the COVID-19 crisis.
Resources for small businesses affected by the coronavirus from the NYC Department of Small Business Services
An FAQ for residential and commercial building owners and managers about COVID-19, from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
The Public Charge Rule during the COVID-19 crisis, from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs
Resources for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 crisis, including health, housing, childcare, and the status of immigration proceedings and enforcement, from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs
HOW YOU CAN HELP
How to help people affected by COVID-19, including how to donate, volunteer (as an individual or an organization) from Help Now NYC and how healthcare workers can support healthcare facilities in need from the NYS Department of Health’s Office of Health Emergency Preparedness
How to help doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers on the front lines – including support for meals, hotel rooms and scrubs – so they can continue to care for patients without exposing themselves or their families to undue infection risk, from NYC Health + Hospitals