What to Know
- The emotional and mental toll of the ongoing pandemic continues to be felt by many -- including those who have been on the frontlines since the start of the health crisis.
- New Jersey Department of Human Services partnered with Rutgers University Behavioral Healthcare Department to launch help hotlines for the state's frontline heroes.
- Help also remains available for any resident who is feeling this strain of the pandemic on their own mental health.
The emotional and mental toll of the ongoing pandemic continues to be felt by many -- including those who have been on the frontlines since the start of the health crisis.
"We are aware that the holiday season can be a stressful one in good times, but for countless frontline workers the pandemic has made things even harder on their mental health. Please know first that it is OK to not be OK, and second that help is available and just a phone call away," Gov. Phil Murphy said
With this in mind, New Jersey Department of Human Services partnered with Rutgers University Behavioral Healthcare Department to launch help hotlines for the state's frontline heroes.
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"Through the great work of Commissioner Carole Johnson and her team at the department of human services and in partnership with Rutgers University Behavioral Healthcare, we’re proud to provide emotional support and crisis counseling to healthcare workers and first responders impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic," Murphy said.
"Our frontline healthcare workers and first responders have seen far too much heartbreak and tragedy and we want to be sure that they have a safe place to talk about their experiences, their anxieties and trauma," Murphy went on to say. "From the very start of this pandemic they have risked their lives everyday in the battle against COVID caring for our families while they worry about the health and well-being of their own families and of themselves. In every sense they are heroes, but even heroes can need help."
Frontline Healthcare Workers
"The mission of HEAL NJ Healthcare Workers COVID Hope & Healing Helpline, is to provide live COVID crisis counseling support, 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to all New Jersey healthcare workers, their families, and caregivers statewide, with emergency support available 24/7," according to the program.
"Heal NJ offers live support for doctors, nurses, hospital staff and all other healthcare personnel by trained crisis counselors and healthcare peers…the helpline can also provide connection to other resources including telehealth crisis counseling, virtual support groups and wellness webinars," Murphy explained.
Healthcare workers, their families and caregivers can access HEAL NJ through the following:
- 1-833-416-8773 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week with emergency support available 24/7)
Law Enforcement Workers
Meanwhile, RISE NJ First Responders COVID Hope & Healing hotline provides help to New Jersey first responders including police, firefighters, EMS, National Guard, Military and Veterans and their families statewide.
The program also provides crisis counseling, virtual support groups, resiliency and wellness webinars.
"For our law enforcement officers, firefighters, EMS professionals and other first responders the RISE NJ First Responders COVID Hope and Healing hotline is here for you," Murphy said.
RISE NJ First Responders COVID Hope & Healing can be reached at:
- 1-833-237-4325 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week with emergency support available 24/7)
New Jersey Residents
"Help also remains available for any resident who is feeling this strain of the pandemic on their own mental health," the governor said.
Any New Jersey resident can call 866-202-HELP or text NJHOPE to 51684 for free, confidential mental health support from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
Additionally, deaf and hard-of-hearing residents can call 973-870-0677 via videophone from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to speak to someone and receive support.