The DC Department ofBehavioral Health


The Department of Behavioral Health provides prevention, intervention and treatment services  and supports for children, youth and adults with mental and/or substance use disorders including emergency psychiatric care and community-based outpatient and residential services.

DBH serves more than 22,000 adults, children and youth and their families each year through a network of community based providers and unique government delivered services. It operates Saint Elizabeths Hospital—the District’s inpatient psychiatric facility.

Values That Guide Our Work


The District of Columbia is a thriving community where prevention is possible and recovery from mental health and substance use disorders is the expectation.


The Mission of the Department of Behavioral Health (DBH) is to support prevention, resiliency and recovery for District residents in need of public mental health services.


The Access HelpLine at 1(888)7WE-HELP or 1-888-793-4357 is the easiest way to get connected to services provided by the Department of Behavioral Health and its certified behavioral health care providers. This 24-hour, seven-day-a-week telephone line is staffed by behavioral health professionals who can refer a caller to immediate help or ongoing care. The Access Helpline can activate mobile crisis teams to respond to adults and children who are experiencing a psychiatric or emotional crisis and are unable or unwilling to travel to receive behavioral health services.


System of Care (SOC) Partners


D.C. Children’s SOC is robust with over 30 organizations and District agencies collaborating towards successful implementation.

  •  Child Serving District Agencies

  •  Community Organizations

  •  Family Run Organizations

  •  Families & Youth

Our Service Lines are open 24/7, give us a call at 888-7WE-HELP.