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  • Writer's pictureHealthQ

Suicide Prevention, a six point plan for change

Updated: Mar 6, 2022

Each year in Australia there are more than 3000 deaths by #suicide — more than two and a half times that of the national road toll. Suicide is the leading cause of death among people aged 15–44.

This time last year, Health Q Consulting was proud to be a key contributor to the development of Suicide Prevention Australia’s “Six Point Plan for Change”. The vision is a world without suicide.

You can read more here:

We can only achieve this vision by addressing the root causes of distress, and this requires a collective effort from everyone in the Australian #community.

Everyone can help when it comes to suicide #prevention. If you notice a person showing signs of suicidal thoughts, or if you think someone you know or care about is not behaving as they would normally, start a conversation.

  • Ask, "Are you OK?" Be relaxed, friendly and concerned, and make an observation (such as, "You seem less chatty than usual. How are you going?").

  • Listen with an open mind. Take what they say seriously and try your best not to interrupt. If the person needs time to think, sit patiently with the silence. Encourage them to explain further (for example, “Have you been feeling this way for a while?”). Show you’ve listened by repeating what you’ve heard in your own words.

  • Encourage action. Ask questions such as, "What have you done in the past to manage this?" and "How can I help you right now?" If the person has been feeling distressed or depressed for more than 2 weeks, encourage them to see a health professional.

  • Check in. Pop a reminder in your calendar to call the person a few days later. You could say, "I've been thinking of you and want to know how you've been doing since we last chatted." Ask if they’ve found a way to manage the situation and reinforce the benefits of seeking professional help. Stay in touch — show genuine care and concern.

If you are having suicidal thoughts, please seek assistance by contacting your trusted healthcare professional or calling Lifeline on 13 11 14.

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