AMVETS revamps suicide prevention training course

Suicide training
Photo credit AMVETS

AMVETS has revamped its suicide prevention course.

Updates to the Suicide Prevention & Crisis Intervention Course for HEAL Ambassadors include additional suicide prevention scenarios, enhanced illustrations and graphics to better explain scenarios, animation, and overall reconstruction of cases evaluations and dialogue relatable to a younger base and to create a less rigorous experience.

AMVETS Chief Medical Executive Cherissa Jackson said continually updating the training course is vital to curbing suicide.

“The factors behind suicide are ever-changing,” she said. “Therefore, it’s essential that we routinely enhance our efforts to combat suicide so that we can deter people from this permanent solution to what are often temporary problems.”

Created in 2019, the AMVETS Suicide Prevention & Crisis Intervention Course was created in 2019 and is a scenario-based training curriculum. It presents the user with educational content then tests retention and application of the material in several simulations involving persons whose circumstances present suicide risk factors. The course also gives the user ways to identify red flags and intervene when necessary.

AMVETS National Commander Jan Brown previously said the online course is designed to provide family members, caregivers, and friends of veterans at risk of self-harm or suicide with new tools to intervene and save lives.

“This one-of-a-kind training was developed by AMVETS’ HEAL Program for the purpose of taking what they learn through casework to provide anyone with the ability and confidence to handle a crisis before it happens,” she said. “Drastically reducing the incidence of veteran suicide is achievable, but it will require all hands.”

According to Department of Veterans Affairs statistics, nearly 22 veterans die by suicide each day in the United States.

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