Suicide Prevention: Evidence into Practice

Suicide was declared a public health crisis by the U.S. Surgeon General in 1999. However, suicide rates continued to climb over the past two decades by a staggering 35% (1999-2018). Fortunately, we have seen decreases in the national suicide rates from 2018-2020. The pandemic’s impact on mental health is a major focus of public health concern and while distress and mental health suffering have increased, the suicide rate in the US actually decreased by 3% from 2019 to 2020. Provisional data for 2021 shows a 4% increase, and there are reasons for concern for subpopulations during the pandemic. The long-term impact on suicide rates may be seen over a longer timeframe. 

There are important positive changes occurring in the national dialog reflective of pro-mental health culture change; shedding stigma must be accompanied by a deeper understanding of mental health literacy. There are several science-informed, evidence-based strategies to reduce suicide risk, both through the public health approach for an entire population and clinical interventions for patient care. As the science of suicide and prevention has grown rapidly over the past two decades, these prevention strategies and targeted ways to better identify risk must be translated and disseminated for greatest impact.

Learning Objectives

  • Initiate open communication about suicide prevention and mental health to reduce stigma and risk
  • Utilize a public health framework to address suicide in community and clinical settings
  • Implement evidence-based suicide prevention strategies in patient care, workplace, and training environments

Additional Information

Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit
Course opens: 
Course expires: 

Available Credit

  • 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit
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This course is offered through Pri-Med. 


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