Zero Suicide

A commitment to suicide prevention throughout our entire organization and the set of strategies and tools we use in pursuit of that goal.

Zero Suicide is a key outcome of the 2012 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention with the foundational belief that suicide deaths for individuals under care within physical and behavioral health sysetems are preventable.  It is both a bold goal and an aspirational challenge.

The programmatic approach of Zero Suicide is based on the realization that suicidal individuals often fall through the cracks in a sometimes fragmented and distracted health care system.  A systematic approach to quality improvement in theses settings is both available and necessary.  The challenge and implementation of Zero Suicide cannot be borne solely by the practitioners providing clinical care, it requires a system-wide approach to improve outcomes and close gaps.

There are 7 essential elements to adopt.
Mind Springs Health and West Springs Hospital are proud to be early adopters.
  1. LEAD – Create a leadership-driven, safety-oriented culture committed to dramatically reducing suicide among people under care.  Survivors of suicide attempts and suicide loss are included in planning and leadership roles.
  2. TRAIN – Develop a competent, confident and caring workforce.
  3. IDENTIFY – Systematically identify and assess suicide risk among people receiving care.
  4. ENGAGE – Ensure every individual has a pathway to care that is both timely and adequate to meet needs.  Collaborative safety planning and restriction of lethal means are included.
  5. TREAT – Use effective, evidence-based treatments that directly target suicidal thougths and behaviors.
  6. TRANSITION – Provide continuous contact and support, especially after acute care.
  7. IMPROVE – Apply a data-driven quality improvement approach to inform system changes that will lead to improved patient outcomes and better care for those at risk.