A free mobile app is now available to help health care providers assist patients with suicidal ideation and behaviors. The app, called Suicide Safe, has been launched by The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
SAMHSA said Suicide Safe will provide behavioral and primary health care providers with tips on how to assess for suicidal risk, communicate effectively with patients and their families, determine appropriate next steps, and make referrals when needed.
Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States, and it is the second leading cause of death among people age 15 - 34.
“Suicide devastates lives throughout all parts of our nation, but it is a public health issue that is preventable and SAMHSA working to provide people on the front lines with resources they need to save lives,” said SAMHSA administrator Pamela Hyde. “Suicide Safe is a major step forward in suicide prevention. The app gives behavioral and primary care providers an essential and modern prevention tool at their fingertips to help address suicide risk with their patients.”
Almost half of individuals who die by suicide have visited a primary care provider in the month prior to their death, and 20 percent have had contact with mental health services. Behavioral health and primary care settings provide unique opportunities for individuals at risk of suicide to access effective treatment. Yet, a surprising number of behavioral and primary health care providers have never received training on how to assess and manage suicidal patients. SAMHSA said Suicide Safe will help bridge that gap.
Risk Management, SAMHSA, Suicide Safe (App), IT and Data Security, US, Pamela Hyde