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Suicide prevention training planned for physician and health-care professionals

Memorial Hospital Belleville will be offering suicide prevention training later this month for physicians and health-care professionals.

The training, which will be held starting at 8 a.m. Feb. 27, is being done in partnership with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Healthier Together 2020 campaign. Local hospitals and public and mental health organizations are sponsoring the event.

Madison County Mental Health Board Executive Director Deborah Humphrey said suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. She said data shows there were 361 suicides during the past 10 years in Madison County and 264 in St. Clair County.

“Health care is seeing this impact not only with patients, but there is an increasing number of suicides by physicians and healthcare professionals,” Humphrey said.

She said according to statistics one doctor commits suicide in the U.S. every day — the highest suicide rate of any profession.

According to AFSP the number of doctor suicides — 28 to 40 per 100,000 — is more than twice that of the general population, new research shows. The rate in the general population is 12.3 per 100,000.

Suicide rates analyzing occupational groups by sex find that female suicide rates ranked significantly higher for registered nurses as the fifth highest.

Up to 45 percent of individuals who die by suicide visited their primary care physician within a month of their death. Research shows that up to 67 percent of those who attempt suicide receive medical attention because of their attempt.

Suicide is a preventable public health issue. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration states, “given the statistics, primary care has an enormous potential to prevent suicides and connect people to needed specialty care-especially when they collaborate or formally partner with behavioral healthcare.”

Health professionals are in a unique position to notice depression and suicide warning signs in their patients and co-workers and intervene early. Understanding the stressors and hopelessness that lead people to consider suicide and connecting them to the appropriate help can save lives.

The training will also help attendees learn how to talk with other healthcare workers/colleagues when depression and suicide are a concern.

The Best Practice Training aims to provide new suicide prevention information and tools for physicians, health professionals and hospital health educators and administration. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention in partnership with the American College of Emergency Physicians will present best practice in suicide prevention and the newly piloted ICAR2E suicide prevention training for physicians and SafeSide training for suicide prevention for general health care audiences.

Saint Louis University, Medical Intern suicide prevention training and QPR (question, persuade and refer) a model program will also be presented.

The event will take place at Memorial Hospital Belleville, the Auditorium, 4500 Memorial Drive.

– 8 to 10 a.m. (2 Continuing Medical Education and Continuing Education Units)

– 10 to 11 a.m. Elective Session: QPR Training (1 CME or CE)

Cost: Free registration with continental breakfast

Visit to register online.

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