Common Questions - Crisis Services

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Crisis Care in Central Wisconsin

Unsure of what crisis services are? In simple terms, crisis care provides treatment for people with mental health emergencies. Anyone experiencing severe emotional distress can benefit from crisis care. This includes people who are contemplating suicide or harming others. Below you will find some answers to frequently asked questions about North Central Health Care’s crisis care program.

What is Youth Crisis?

Youth Crisis is a program that is in conjunction with Social Services that is meant to interrupt crisis situations and provide a calm environment for children to de-escalate and parents and/or caregiver time to re-group. The admission to Youth Crisis would be initiated by a crisis plan or by a Mobile Crisis Specialist. There would need to be permission from parents and social services would need to get temporary custody.

What is a Crisis Plan?

A crisis plan can be used for anyone that has the potential for a crisis. The plan outlines what the crisis may look like, people that may be helpful in the situation, family dynamics, and an action plan with levels of intervention. The following is an example of a crisis plan:

A developmentally disabled adult that lives in a group home may become agitated and act out violently under certain circumstances. Intervention may begin with a call from a crisis worker to attempt to calm the individual. If the person has a PRN medication then that may be administered. If these methods are helpful, the individual may be transported to the crisis center either by law enforcement or by staff if the situation is safe enough. Then, while the person is at the crisis center he/she is evaluated, observed, and given an opportunity to calm down in a different environment. The staff would remain in the crisis center with the person. This is often successful and the person can then go home.

If this is not successful the Mobile Crisis Specialist would assess the need for further intervention in the way of crisis stabilization or an inpatient admission. Children with mental illness, developmental disabilities, or emotional problems often have a crisis plan. Some are participants in Social Services case management and others of North Central Health Care case management.

What are the numbers to call?


Toll-Free Call connecting you to Crisis Support in the Marathon, Langlade and Lincoln Counties.

Connecting you to Crisis Support in Marathon, Langlade and Lincoln Counties.

988 - National Suicide & Crisis Hotline connecting you to assistance in U.S. This number is not a direct dial to NCHC Crisis Services.

For those with hearing or speech difficulties, please dial 711 to connect with the WI Relay Service.
When you dial 711, a communications assistant will connect you with the NCHC Crisis Hotline. Please provide the operator with the number 715.845.4326. English and Spanish translation is available through 711. For more information about 711, please visit WI Relay 711.

Crisis Center: 1150 Lake View Drive, Wausau 54403
Emergency and crisis care available 24 Hours a Day, 7 Days a Week
No appointments required. Serving Langlade, Lincoln and Marathon Counties.

How/why do people come to the crisis center for an evaluation?

Some people are transported by law enforcement on an emergency detention. The emergency detention is initiated by an officer with the approval of the crisis worker. The detention is completed because the person is believed to be mentally ill, drug dependent, or developmentally disabled and the person shows behavior which may be dangerous to them self or to others. Other people come on a voluntary basis and transport themselves or are brought by family or friends.

What do the Mobile Crisis Specialist and the CART Team do?

A Mobile Crisis Specialist will travel to locations such as hospitals, nursing homes, group homes, schools etc. to gather information, evaluate and assess the situation and make a plan to determine the best course of action. They do the same for individuals that come to the crisis center for an evaluation. The CART Team that is available in Marathon County, combines a law enforcement officer and a NCHC crisis professional together to respond to various situations involving crisis need.

What is a Mobile Crisis Specialists or What is Mobile Crisis?

Mobile Crisis consists of a Mobile Crisis Specialist who may be a trained staff member that can be a nurse, social worker or a mental health tech that is specially trained to evaluate and triage crisis situations.

What is the Crisis Stabilization?

NCHC Crisis Stabilization is less restrictive than the Inpatient Behavioral Health Hospital. It offers crisis stabilization for individuals that are discharged from the Inpatient Psychiatric Hospital and are still in need of services but are not yet ready to be integrated back to the community. It also serves as a stabilization unit for individuals that need stabilization but are not in need of the level of care in the inpatient hospital setting. There is a separate unit for adults and one for youth.

What is considered a crisis?

A crisis is whatever the individual, family or group feels is a crisis at the time. They can take many forms and can happen to anyone. One of the major goals of the Crisis Center is to prevent suicide attempts and intervene so that individuals can get past the suicidal crisis and move on to healthy and effective solutions to their issues. The issue of suicide crosses over all age groups, sexes, races, and disability groups.

The crisis center also handles mental health emergencies and helps people in need of stabilization either in a hospital setting or Crisis Stabilization. Substance abuse can become a crisis, gambling, and other life stress can lead to a crisis situation. Different people have different tolerance to stress so a crisis to one person may not be one to another.

Who is served at the Crisis Center?

The Crisis Center is really a triage center. Anyone and everyone that is having a crisis related to mental illness, alcohol/drug issues, or suicide can be served in some capacity. Much of what the Crisis Center does is to get the person to the place or services that they need to alleviate their crisis.

The Crisis Center also provide referrals to other organizations when people’s needs are related to job loss, spousal abuse, housing, and other life issues that do not rise to the level of a “crisis”. The crisis center also answers the Adult/Elder At Risk emergency line after business hours and triages for Adult Protective Services (APS) until an APS social worker is available.

When is the Crisis Center and Mobile Crisis available?

The Wausau Campus Crisis Center is open 24 hours per day. The crisis and suicide prevention hot-line phones that are answered by the crisis center staff 24 hours per day. There is no appointment necessary to visit the Crisis Center.

Mobile Crisis Teams are available 24/7/365 and are ready to help you or your family in the event of a mental or behavioral health emergency.

Where is the Crisis Center?

The Crisis Center is located in Wausau at North Central Health Care in the rear of the building located at 1150 Lake View Drive. Follow the signs for Crisis Center and look for the white flag entrance.