• Innovation in Action

Mar 3, 2021

You Do Not Have to Cope Alone. Access Resources for Frontline Worker Mental Health


Stress and anxiety continue to be unfortunate side effects of living in a world threatened by COVID-19, but health care professionals do not have to cope alone. Frontline workers are particularly at risk for negative mental health effects because of the constant demand of caring for patients during the pandemic. The Health Quality Innovation Network has compiled resources to help health care workers who need help coping with the mental effects of the pandemic.


  • COVID19CounselingCA offers free short-term mental health counseling to frontline workers and first responders.
  • HealthWell Foundation provides copayment assistance for behavioral health services for frontline workers who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Through the COVID-19 Frontline Health Care Workers Behavioral Health Fund, eligible health care providers can receive up to $2,000 in financial assistance to pay for out-of-pocket treatment related copays for prescriptions, counseling services, psychotherapy, and transportation needed to manage their COVID-19 related behavioral health issues.



  • The Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute provides up to 8 free teletherapy sessions to physicians, nurses, and other front-line workers through their new Frontline Responders program. Call (312) 897-1405 or email frontlinework@chicagoanalysis.org
  • The Illinois Department of Human Services Call4Calm Text Line is available 24 hours a day, seven days each week. Anyone struggling with stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic can text TALK to 552020 or HABLAR for Spanish, which will connect them to a counselor in the area who is knowledgeable about available local resources.


  • The Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s program, Stronger Together, is an outreach program working with multiple state, tribal, and community partners to provide crisis counseling via remote services, educational materials and online support for overall mental health and wellness: (800) 273-8255


  • Missouri Department of Mental Health Disaster Distress Helpline provides free, on-demand counseling, referrals, and other needed support services to anyone who needs help dealing with a traumatic event. (800) 985-5990

New York:

  • NY Project Hope is an emotional support helpline that can provide educational materials and referrals to mental health professionals. 844-863-9314

North Carolina:

  • Hope4Healers Helpline (919-226-2002) is a new initiative in partnership with the North Carolina Psychological Association. It provides mental health and resilience support for health care professionals, emergency medical specialists, first responders, and other staff who work in health care settings and their families throughout the state who are experiencing stress from being on the front lines of the state’s COVID 19 response. Service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.


  • Mental Health Association Oklahoma offers support groups for first responders and healthcare workers as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Each group is led by a mental health professional and meetings and held through the Zoom app, anyone can participate, and the service is free. (918) 585-1213


  • The Center for Community Resources offers the Pennsylvania Statewide Support and Referral Helpline for COVID-19. Service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 855-284-2494

South Carolina:

  • First Responder Resilience Program is available to first responders in Cedar Hill, Desoto, Duncanville, Grand Prairie, Lancaster, Mansfield, Midlothian, Red Oak, Waxahachie. They provide three free counseling sessions and will assist with finding a long-term counselor if needed.
    • Mental Health & Addictions Support for Challenging Times – Free and Anonymous. Call 844-SC-HOPES
    • Specialized support for health care professionals providing direct care to COVID-19 patients. Through calling the SC HOPES line, healthcare workers can be fast-tracked for access to mental health professionals. 844-SC-HOPES


  • The Tennessee Department of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services offers a COVID-19 Emotional Support phone line to provide mental health support for frontline workers. Service is available from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. EST daily.  Specially trained mental health professionals answer incoming calls and provide emotional support through active listening, helping callers identify and address basic needs, and informing callers about tools for managing stress and strategies for self-care. (888) 642-7886


  • Texas Health and Human Services offers a COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Counseling services are confidential and free of charge to people who call the hotline. 833-986-19191


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