Counseling Urged for Hurricane Victims and Rescuers

Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt today is unveiling a national campaign aimed at providing mental health services to hurricane survivors and first responders.

The new public service advertisements (PSAs) are designed to encourage adults, parents, caregivers and first responders to consider seeking mental health services if they are still showing signs that they have been psychologically impacted by recent hurricanes. The PSAs are the result of a partnership between HHS' Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Ad Council. They will be distributed to 12,000 media outlets nationwide.

Viewers and listeners are encouraged to take time to check in on how they and their families are doing, and call a confidential, toll-free number (1-800-789-2647 for adults/parents and 1-800-273-TALK for first responders) to speak to a trained professional who can assist with information and referrals to local services. Or, they can log on to www.samhsa.gov to find out where they can turn to for help.

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