South Eastern HSC Trust Leads The Way In Suicide Prevention Care Pathyway

10th September 2021
Towards Zero Suicide Event

On World Suicide Prevention Day (Friday 10th September) the South Eastern HSC Trust is proud to be the first Trust in Northern Ireland to go live with the new Regional Suicide Prevention Care Pathway.  The pathway has been developed as part of a suite of work under the Towards Zero Suicide (TZS) initiative.

TZS is not a fixed target, rather a cultural movement that aims to improve the care and outcomes for people at risk of suicide who come in to contact with Mental Health Services.  The pathway has been coproduced in partnership with service users, past and present, lived experience volunteers, staff and key stakeholders and has been developed with a trauma informed lens to guide people through their Mental Health journey.

Speaking at the launch, Chief Medical Officer, Professor Sir Michael McBride said: “Today is World Suicide Prevention Day and this year’s theme is ‘Creating Hope Through Action’.  It is a reminder that there is an alternative to suicide and aims to inspire confidence and light in all of us; that our actions, no matter how big or small, may provide hope to those who are struggling.

The launch of the Suicide Prevention Care Pathway today will help to identify and respond in a timely way to patients presenting to mental health services who are at risk of suicide. The goal is that every patient identified as being at risk has a suicide care management plan, or pathway to care that is timely, appropriate and proportionate.

Suicide deaths are preventable, they are not inevitable. The feelings that drive suicide are often temporary and with the right help and support people can get through a crisis and recover.

We all have a role to play in reducing suicide. Our actions, no matter how big or small may provide hope to someone who is struggling. Simply asking someone how they are feeling and giving them the opportunity to talk about something which is troubling them can be the first step towards recovery.”

The Operations Manager for Mental Health in the South Eastern Trust Fiona Dagg said “We are absolutely delighted to be launching the Northern Ireland Suicide Prevention Care Pathway on World Suicide Prevention Day in South Eastern HSC Trust.  This is the culmination of many months of research and partnership working with the Towards Zero Suicide Collaborative.

Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, our desire to promote good mental health and address suicide has remained a key priority.  We have worked collectively with service users, carers and staff to develop a range of interventions to enhance the services we provide to some of the most vulnerable people within our community.”

The South Eastern H&SC Trust is determined to ensure that each person’s journey is unique and the pathway has been designed to promote flexibility, person-centred and family-focussed approaches.