Suicide Prevention Training for Emergency Department Staff

By Sharon Smith
Thursday, 04 June, 2015

Queensland Emergency Department staff in public hospitals will be receiving patient suicide prevention training as part of a new tailored package rolling out over the next 12 months. It will provide welcomed improvements on the current training which requires full or half-day attendance and is generally targeted at mental health professionals.
The need for specialised training was highlighted to the State Government as part of the efforts of Kerrie Keepa, a suicide prevention advocate.
“Kerrie has become a campaigner for positive change in the way we help prevent suicide and I thank her for her tireless advocacy on this issue.” said Member for Capalaba, Don Brown, as he welcomed the initiative.
“We lose more years of potential life to suicide than to any other cause,” Mr Brown said.
“Through this program, emergency staff will be more aware and better trained to deal with people who are at risk of suicide.”
Quick Facts:
-The new training package, tailored specifically to emergency department staff, will be delivered more flexibly and will use a ‘train-the-trainer’ model.
-The training package will be based on the existing Emergency Events Management Mental Health Module and updated with a greater emphasis on the detection and management of suicide risk.
-Queensland Health will update its Guidelines for Suicide Risk Assessment and Management to include clinical best practice for emergency departments.
-The Queensland MIND (Mental Illness Nursing Documents) Essentials resource for nurses will also be updated to strengthen the section that provides advice on how to care for a person who is suicidal.

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