Today is World Suicide Prevention Day with the international theme this year being ‘Reaching out and saving lives’.
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said yesterday that DHBs have been working with community organisations, iwi and health professionals to review the needs of their communities and the current service being provided to develop suicide prevention plans for the next two years.
He said: “Reducing suicide rates requires co-ordinated action at a national and local level. DHBs are well placed to bring community groups together to co-ordinate and lead an approach that best needs local needs.
“Suicide prevention requires a range of approaches, from enhancing community resilience and promoting mental health, to improving the care for those most at risk of suicide.”
MidCentral DHB is one of the 20 DHBs to have produced a suicide prevention plan to better support the wellbeing of our communities.
The Minister also highlighted MidCentral DHB and the Ministry of Education, Special Education initiative where they have a protocol for responding to critical incidents of suicide in school communities and also jointly provide suicide prevention training.
Claudine Nepia-Tule, Portfolio Manager Mental Health and Addictions, Planning and Funding, said: “This initiative is a good demonstration of inter-sectorial collaboration. The Critical Incident Response Team is a combined team of clinicians and education sector representatives that respond to critical incidents. The team has been in place for several years now and have a great working relationship and knowledge of trauma, acute and post traumatic stress reactions in supporting young people within school settings.”
The Child, Adolescent and Family Mental Health Service, Oranga Hinengaro (Māori Mental Health Service), Public Health Service (Public Health Mental Health Promotion), are often involved in working with schools where a critical incident has occurred.
The aim of the protocol is to effectively manage critical incidents and reduce risk for youth and their families.
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