Every day we scan news headlines and social media for items of interest to the field of suicide prevention. Here’s what we found last week:

2018-2019 Annual Report: Inform, transformCentre for Suicide Prevention
We inform to transform: once people know suicide is preventable, and understand the role they play in its prevention, they reach out to support the lives of others, the lives of those who cannot see a way out of their deep psychological pain. Are we making a difference? How do we know? Are our clients ready, willing and able to help someone at risk of suicide? We are delighted to say people are reporting that they are. They are transformed.  
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Free educational resource helps teachers prevent youth suicide in First NationsCBC
August 24, 2019
The First Nations Youth Suicide Prevention Curriculum was developed with the goal to prevent youth suicide and empower young people in First Nations to live long and healthy lives. Project co-director Harvey McCue from Georgina Island First Nation said the curriculum will allow teachers to help young people understand suicide as an issue, and how to build resiliency and self-confidence. 

Editorial: Suicide – turning the tideScience Magazine
August 23, 2019
Denmark has reduced their suicide rate from 38 per 100,000 to 11.4 in under 30 years, thanks to their multi-pronged, long-term approach which emphasized means restriction and improved outpatient care, including the introduction of suicide prevention clinics for people at immediate high risk of suicide. “The Danish example shows that suicide prevention initiatives save lives. It seems that universal initiatives that address large groups might have secured the largest gains. The body of evidence on effective efforts is substantial, and policy-makers should start using this knowledge to take charge and reduce suicide number,” say authors.

Geography of loss—a global look at the uneven toll of suicideScience Magazine
August 23, 2019
Suicide rates differ around the world, but are generally decreasing. The US is seeing an increase in suicide rates, though, and rates in some Eastern European and African countries remain high while the Middle East and Asian report lower rates. 

Suicide Risk in Nurses Higher Than General Population – MedPage Today
August 22, 2019
A new study, the first American nationwide investigation into nurse suicide, has been released by the University of California. The study found that female and male nurses have higher rates of suicide than the general population. “Nurses are known not to care for themselves as much as they care for others. It’s just a part of who we are,” said study author Judy Davidson, RN, DNP, University of California San Diego School of Medicine. “But now with this whole movement towards preventing burnout, increasing joy in the workplace, increasing resiliency, this is a piece of that puzzle … sadly it took a tragic event to get the ball rolling.” 

Three suicide prevention strategies show real promise. How can they reach more people? Science Magazine
August 22, 2019
This article explores three effective suicide prevention strategies at length: crisis lines, means restriction, and the Zero Suicide movement.  

Suicide attempts are hard to anticipate. A study that tracks teens’ cellphone use aims to change thatScience Magazine
August 21, 2019
The Mobile Assessment for the Prediction of Suicide (MAPS) is one app that is seeking to help predict immediate suicide risk. Currently, the app is being tested on youth from ages 13 to 18, and asks them questions such as, “In the past week, how often have you thought of killing yourself?” “Did you make a plan to kill yourself?” “Did you make an attempt to kill yourself?” In addition to their responses to these questions, researchers will analyze other tracked data for indications of faltering social relationships and psychological pain. They hope to develop an algorithm that will indicate risk, to be used by clinicians to support their clients.

Waterloo region, Wellington County join national suicide prevention project Roots of HopeCBC
August 21, 2019
Waterloo region and Wellington County, Ontario, have joined the Roots of Hope project, a suicide prevention initiative of the Mental Health Commission of Canada. They hope to increase public awareness and education around suicide and conduct research into its impact in the region. “It will also be an increase in some of the priorities that the council has been working on, which includes a research component and it also includes a men’s mental health initiative and a hospital care resource,” said Elisa Brewer-Singh, executive director of the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council. Roots of Hope will allow “an additional lens of research and evaluation to really ensure that these tools are effective in reaching the community.”

What Everyone Gets Wrong About SuicideReader’s Digest
August 21, 2019
Myths around suicide are dispelled in this article, written by a person who has experienced suicidal thoughts. Some of these myths include, “suicide is wrong because it is selfish.” Jeff Nalin, PhD, clinical psychologist explains: “During this time, rational thought is elusive. Suicidal individuals genuinely believe that their loved ones will be better off without them. Reacting to expressions of suicide with an angry or dismissive attitude will only encourage people in need of help to keep their feelings to themselves.”

These college students are far more prone to serious mental-health issuesMarket Watch
August 19, 2019
A newly released study that includes survey results from campuses across the US has found that students who are members of a gender minority, that is, students who do not identify as either male or female, or who do not identify with the gender they were assigned at birth, experience mental health issues at a rate double that of their cisgender peers. They reported having experienced suicide ideation, making a plan for suicide, or attempting suicide, at rates three to four times higher than their cisgender peers. 

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