Our City's strategy is guided by the belief that all Tulsans should have the ability to flourish. There is currently a 26-year life expectancy gap between those with mental illness and those without. For those with mental health needs, it can sometimes be difficult to find the right resources.
Below are just some of the mental health resources offered in Tulsa.
A Better Way Tulsa
Through a roving van outreach, A Better Way makes stops at targeted “hot spot” areas within the City of Tulsa that are known for panhandling and homelessness, including pedestrian walkways, medians, and overpasses.
Community Response Team (CRT)
Several agency partners have worked together since January 2017 to provide a more efficient and effective response to individuals in emergent mental health crisis by providing safety and stabilization. CRT operates five days a week, Monday through Friday, and provides a rapid response team that works to de-escalate individuals in mental health crisis and divert them when appropriate from costly jail, hospital emergency room, and inpatient behavioral health hospital stays. CRT creates a more efficient utilization of fire, emergency medical services, and police services.
CRT, which is partially funded through the Tulsa Area United Way, operates as a three-person team including an officer from the Tulsa Police Department, a paramedic from the Tulsa Fire Department, and a mental health professional from Family and Children’s Services. These first responders undergo Crisis Intervention Training (CIT) to respond to emergencies and mental calls via a partnership with Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. The mental health professional completes specialized training for best practice in Mobile Crises Response and Crises Intervention through Family and Children’s Services.
Community Assistance Referral and Education Services (CARES)
Tulsa Fire Department started the CARES pilot program in 2016 to reduce high-utilizers’ calls. High utilizers are those who call 911 more than 15 times a year, often for non-emergencies. CARES connects high-utilizers with healthcare and social service providers such as Mental Health Association Oklahoma, Family & Children Services, and St. John’s Health System. From January to March of 2017, CARES reduced calls from the top ten high-utilizers by 70 percent.
Project Blue Streets: OSU Center for Health Sciences
OSU Center for Health Sciences, members of the Tulsa Police and Fire Departments, and local medical professionals have teamed up to provide a Tulsa area medical clearance protocol for acute-psychiatric patients. Many patients who are taken to hospitals either don't need to be there and need prompt mental health treatment, or need a next-step path from the hospital to mental health treatment. This protocol is meant to be adopted across Tulsa's hospitals and medical facilities and used to direct emergency personnel as to what the most appropriate treatment is for those struggling with mental health issues.
Resilient Tulsa Strategy
The Resilience Strategy serves as a roadmap to addresses Tulsa’s most pressing challenges and seeks to build capacity among residents, city systems and community partners to build a more resilient city. Resilient Tulsa is organized into four overarching visions, 11 goals and 41 actions, which taken together strive to produce long-term solutions to challenges ranging from extreme weather events to significant racial, economic, and health inequities. Each action also outlines success metrics that the City will use to track progress. Learn more
Tulsa Sobering Center is a jail diversion program designed to offer an alternative for adult men and women detained for public intoxication. In collaboration with the Tulsa Police Department, the Tulsa Sobering Center is operated by Grand Addition Recovery Center, a leader in addiction treatment and recovery. Upon entry into the center, Grand Addiction Recovery Center connects adults who suffer with alcoholism or other addictions to opportunities to access its long-term counseling and rehabilitation programs for substance abuse treatment. Learn more
Special Services Docket
Tulsa Municipal Court, Mental Health Association Oklahoma, and other service providers have teamed up to create the Special Services Docket - a jail diversion program offered at municipal court for those who have committed low-level offenses. The docket allows those affected by mental illness, substance use, and homeliness who have committed low-level municipal offenses to be paired with a case manager in lieu of serving jail time and the usual fines and fees associated with those offenses. More information can be found online.
Tulsa Commission on Youth Mental Health and Family Resilience
The Mayor’s Office of Resilience and Equity and the Mental Health Association of Oklahoma convened the Children’s Mental Health and Family Resilience Coalition in February of 2020. The coalition is made up of representatives from the medical, educational, higher education/research, justice, faith based, and community-based systems. Over the course of 2020, the coalition met regularly to discuss experiences with families and children with mental health disorders and to investigate solutions they have considered or seen to be effective in other locations. The Children’s Mental Health and Resilience Coalition continues to meet and has expanded to have a statewide focus. Learn more
Financial Empowerment Center
The City of Tulsa, in partnership with Goodwill Industries of Tulsa operates a Financial Empowerment Center (FEC) that offers one-on-one financial counseling at no cost to all residents. Services are available to anyone regardless of income. Services are available in English, Spanish, Zopau and other languages via Language Line. Learn more
Our Community partners:
211 Eastern Oklahoma
211 is Oklahoma’s Help Hotline and online resource. Get assistance with food, rent, utilities and more by texting 2110K to 898211 or by calling 211. 211 offers mental health and addiction assistance, employment and income help, and much more. Legal assistance and law enforcement services include Juvenile Delinquency Diversion Counseling and a Criminal Correctional System for offender and ex-offender issues. Case care management is also available for ex-offenders.
Visit their website to see a full list of available services.
COPES is a Family and Children's Services 24/7 mobile crises program dedicated to serving adults and children in psychiatric crises, helping prevent suicide with less-restrictive levels of care. COPES uses a sophisticated phone system and staffing patterns to respond effectively to crises. Contact COPES at (918) 744-4800. Read more about COPES.
Grand Addiction Recovery Center
Grand Addiction Recovery Center serves as a comprehensive community addiction adult recovery center. Grand Addiction Recovery Center is Oklahoma’s largest Comprehensive Community Addiction Recovery Center, offering adults suffering from the brain disease of addiction/co-existing mental health and substance use disorders life-saving recovery tools and programs. Grand Addiction Recovery Center partners with the Tulsa Police Department to operate the Tulsa Sobering Center. (Formerly 12 & 12)
Mental Health Association Oklahoma
Mental Health Association Oklahoma promotes mental health, working to prevent mental disorders and conquer mental illness through advocacy, research, service, housing and education. Mental Health Association Oklahoma is a partner in the CARES program, the Community Response Team (CRT) and A Better Way.
Mental Health Assistance Center
The assistance center from Mental Health Association Oklahoma is a free resource referral line that provides one-on-one customer assistance to help find the best referral option for those in need. Read more.
Morton Comprehensive Health Services
Morton provides comprehensive health and family-based services to all without regard to finances. In relation to mental health, Morton has a division called The Behavioral Health Department, comprised of licensed professional counselors and social workers, concerned with addressing mental health issues. Depression, stress, PTSD, and substance abuse services are available.
Contact Morton at (918) 587-2171 or visit their website.
Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS)
The Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services offers vocational rehabilitation, helping individuals with disabilities prepare for work and become gainfully employed. These services include mental restoration. See the full list of services on their website.
Oklahoma Department of Human Services (DHS)
DHS works to improve the quality of life for venerable Oklahomans, helping them lead safer, independent and more productive lives.
Community Integrated Employment (CIE)
CIE is a program under developmental disabilities services and promotes independence through paid work and training activities in the community. Visit DHS online to learn more.
Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs (ODVA)
ODVA is committed to helping Oklahoma veterans through various programs and care. ODVA works with the National Center for PTSD to know the latest research and get education on trauma and PTSD.
To contact ODVA, you can reach their Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 or visit ODVA online.
After seeing Tulsans who suffered from mental illness lived an average of 27 years less than others, Urban Institute created the 2018 Mental Health and Wellness 10-Year Plan, designed to improve mental health and the health care system. Action 16 in Resilient Tulsa focuses on investing in the mental health of Tulsa's youth as outlined by the plan. A 17-member steering committee of community leaders has been formed to help outline deficiencies and gaps in Tulsa's current healthcare system. Experts from various City departments were interviewed to help provide insight into the problems facing Tulsans. Read the plan.