One of the ways in which we can offer support to suicidal patients is by setting up a phone hotline for them. This is a line that they can call, whenever they are in distress: for instance, whenever they encounter suicidal thoughts. Having such a hotline can make the difference in someone live. It can actually save someone’s life. This is because the probability of a suicidal patient actually going ahead to take their life goes down greatly if they receive help as soon as they start having suicidal ideation.

In the actual process of setting up a phone hotline for suicidal patients, you need to:

  1. Acquire the support center premises: this is where the people receiving the phone calls from the patients (using the hotline) would be based.
  2. Hire the people to offer support through the hotline: these should ideally be psychiatrists, counselors, social workers and other individuals who are truly well qualified to handle suicidal patients.
  3. Get a suitable phone number: this should ideally be a number that is easy to remember off-head.
  4. Publicize the hotline: the idea here is to get as many people as possible to know the hotline, and to regard it as a number through which they can get help when they are severely distressed. You can use the media to get people to know about the hotline.

You obviously have to be ready to cater for the phone bills that will be arising from the use of the hotline. This is especially the case if you opt to operate a toll-free hotline — which means that you are the one who would be catering for the callers’ phone bills. But there are ways of minimizing these costs. For instance, if you are using Metro PCS, you can visit the metro pay bill portal, and select a phone plan that charges you a flat monthly rate, regardless of the phone calls made. This means that you would be make a uniform metro pcs payment for the hotline, regardless of the number of people who call, and regardless of the duration of their calls. Whatever the cost, it will go a long way towards having a reliable support network for the suicidal patients. And as we noted earlier, it can actually help save some of the patients’ lives.