DrDan’s Toolkit #3, WA State Suicide Prevention Plan

One of my projects I am truly excited about is the Washington State Suicide Prevention Plan.  I had the opportunity to work with a great group of dedicated people on writing this important document, which was published earlier this year.  You can read WA’s completed plan, as well as plans for many other States.

The requirement to write a suicide prevention plan stemmed from actions by Forefront, Representative Tina Orwall, and a host of others, to pass legislation requiring all licensed mental health and medical professionals to receive training in suicide assessment, treatment and management.  This requirement became the law in 2014, RCW 43.70.442, and required the Department of Health to oversee the writing of the Washington State Suicide Prevention Plan.

In early meetings, our work group decided to base our plan on the 2012 update of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention.  This is the first time WA has developed a suicide prevention plan for adults; we’ve had one pertaining to Youth Suicide prevention since 1995.  Governor Inslee, thru Executive Order 16-02, approved our plan in January 2016 and ordered immediate implementation in January 2016.

In the plan, we assert that suicide is a preventable public health problem, and that everyone has a role in suicide prevention.  We established 4 strategic directions, based on the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention.  Each strategic direction contains goals and key recommendations.

These goals and recommendations work together with the Washington State Plan for Healthy Communities, the Healthiest Next Generation Initiative and the Department of Health’s Strategic Plan.

Please review WA’s completed plan and let me know if you have any questions.

If you are interested in more of my background, want to review my CV, or are interested in my upcoming trainings, please visit my website at criticalconcepts.org.

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