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Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield opens registration for 2024 mental health first aid certification classes

In its continuing effort to address the state’s mental health crisis, Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield announces the opening of registration for its 2024 mental health first aid (MHFA) certification courses, offered at no cost to participants. Since Arkansas Blue Cross’ community outreach program was launched last spring, more than 1,000 Arkansans have received their MHFA certifications from the National Council for Mental Wellbeing.

According to government findings, one in five Americans lives with a mental illness, and nearly half will experience a mental health struggle at some point in their lives. In the MHFA certification program, participants learn how to recognize someone in their workplace, family or community who might be experiencing anxiety, depression, addiction or other behavioral health challenge. Participants also learn how to initiate a conversation and direct the person to care if needed.

“These Mental Health First Aid classes help bridge a vital gap between Arkansans who are experiencing a mental health challenge and connecting them with behavioral health services,” said Arkansas Blue Cross President and CEO Curtis Barnett. “Nearly all of us know someone personally who has been affected, and observance skills learned in this training could literally help change and save lives.”

Classes will be held from 10 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. at the ArkansasBlue Welcome Centers in the following locations on the following dates:

  • July 13 – Little Rock, 416 S. University Ave., Ste. 110
  • July 27 – Fayetteville, 3013 N. College Ave.
  • August 9 – Pine Bluff, 509 Mallard Loop
  • August 24 – Rogers, 4602 W. Walnut St.

More classes will be added at a later date. To reserve your spot, complete the free online registration at

Participants seeking certification will complete two hours of online pre-work, followed by the six-hour, in-person class.