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Op-ed: Leising: Free mental health services available for communities across Senate District 42

Free mental health services available for communities across Senate District 42

By State Sen. Jean Leising (R-Oldenburg)

As a retired nurse, I have advocated for statewide health and well-being throughout my tenure as a state senator. The COVID-19 pandemic has been detrimental to the mental health of many people throughout the state, but programs like the Be Well Crisis Helpline serve as excellent resources for those who are struggling during this difficult time.

The Be Well Crisis Helpline was launched in July 2020 in direct response to the increased levels of stress and anxiety that many are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The helpline has indicated that many callers are suffering from isolation, withdrawal, sleep issues, anxiety and difficulty concentrating.

To date, the helpline has answered more than 6,000 calls, with an average wait time of just 16 seconds.

The Be Well Crisis Helpline is powered by Indiana 211, a free service that connects Indiana residents with the opportunity to access health and human services resources.

To speak with a trained counselor through the helpline, Indiana residents can simply dial 2-1-1, enter their ZIP code, and press 3. These counselors are specially equipped to help with problems that may be triggered or worsened by the pandemic.

I strongly encourage residents who may be struggling with their mental health to get in touch with the helpline. If you know someone who is struggling with their mental health, consider reaching out to them and letting them know about this valuable resource, and please remember to check in on them. We will all have to work together to overcome the negative impact COVID-19 has had on our health and well-being.

For more information on the Be Well Crisis Helpline, visit

If you have questions, comments or concerns regarding this or other topics, please contact me by email at or by phone at 800-382-9467.