Speaker : Dr. Eric D. Caine
Date : Nov 5, 2015 (Thursday)
Time : 10:00 – 11:00
Venue : Studio 2, 2/F, BIR, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.
To date, there have been no effective, broadly applied, comprehensive and sustainable approaches to preventing suicide and risk-related premature deaths in the United States. Rare examples of exceptional programs exist – in the US Air Force for about a decade and in the police force of Montreal, Quebec, Canada – but no one has replicated these results, nor is it clear that they are suitable for dealing with the extraordinary diversity within and between states, let alone an entire country. Preventing suicides and premature deaths – to the extent that there is a substantial reduction in population-level rates – will require systemic, systematically applied and coordinated interventions that, at once, address the needs of both large contributing groups and high-risk individuals; reach across the life course; and are driven by powerful community, health system, and governmental forces. They will require carefully crafted public health initiatives that reach far ‘upstream’ while also dealing with persons on the ‘edge of death.’ While suicide most often is viewed from the perspectives of individuals who have killed themselves, these deaths are drawn from among diverse groups and populations who share many common characteristics. Effective prevention programs must, by necessity, address the diversity of these groups even as it is essential meet the needs of individuals suffering great distress. Suicide prevention must be built as a mosaic; no single piece will convey the entire picture.
The fractured state of suicide prevention efforts reflects the many challenges that must be addressed and barriers overcome in order to build a comprehensive set of approach – what might be called a “full court press” necessary for creating and sustaining the mosaic of efforts required for preventing suicide, attempted suicide, and antecedent risks that are common to these adverse outcomes, as well as other related forms of premature death (e.g., deaths arising from drug overdose). The presentation will consider promoting effective, broadly based coalitions; the opportunities from forging synergies among diverse groups; and the very central role of “culture change” that will be essential to creating and sustaining a powerfully effective suicide prevention movement.
About the speaker
Dr. Caine has served since 1996 as John Romano Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center and Co-Director of the Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide (CSPS) since its founding in 1998. He has deep experience in the evaluation, management, and aftercare of acutely suicidal individuals, dating to the 1970s. Dr. Caine recently was a member of the Task Force charged with reformulating the National Strategy of Suicide Prevention, a subgroup of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, and now co-chairs its ‘Impact Group’, which will track the effects of the new strategy on national rates of suicide.
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