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U.S. to award $35 million in grants to tribes for 988 crisis line

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FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is making $35 million available in grants to Native Americans to help implement a nationwide mental health crisis hotline.

The announcement Friday came after federal officials visited pueblos in New Mexico to hear from the communities about health care needs.

The 988 hotline went live in July. It's designed to be an easy number to remember, similar to 911. The hotline connects callers with trained mental health counselors. The money available to 574 federally recognized tribes will have a limited reach with up to 100 grants awarded. The deadline to apply is Oct. 25. Federal data shows Native Americans and Alaska Natives are disproportionately impacted by suicide.