Fundamentals of Suicide Prevention

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Suicide is a major public health issue contributing heavily to the most common causes of death across multiple populations. However, suicide is preventable. This 1-hour training will offer a standardized approach that can be adapted to a range of settings for the prevention of suicide. Highlighting the importance of basing suicide prevention on culturally responsive approaches, this session will share best practices related to specific cultural groups who are at increased risk for suicide.


12:00-12:05 PM | Welcome & introductions
12:05-12:20 PM | Scope of the problem; risk and protective factors; cultural responsiveness; warning signs
12:20-12:40 PM | Standard Care Elements; assessment tools; safety planning
12:40-12:50 PM | Treatment modalities; Do’s & Don’ts
12:50-1:00 PM   | Q&A

Learning objectives
When attendees return to the workplace, they will be able to:

  • Identify risk and protective factors for suicide and understand the difference between risk factors and warning signs
  • Describe the recommended standard care elements in a behavioral health outpatient setting
  • Identify screening and assessment tools for use in suicide prevention
  • Describe the key elements of an effective Safety Planning Intervention

Target Audience: Social service providers and helping professionals with direct client contact.
Social Work Practice Level: This course is appropriate for beginner, intermediate, and advanced BSW/ MSW learners.
Content Level: This course covers beginner and intermediate level material.
Course Delivery Format: Live webinar
Interactivity: This course will offer 10 minutes of Q&A time, as well as real-time polling, and group discussion prompts.
LSW/LCSW and PCB Continuing Education Credit: 1*
Fees: $20 general registration; additional $5 for registration with LSW/LCSW CE credit
For PCB credit please use the general registration for checkout.  
Registration includes access to the live event and recording, PDF of slides, and relevant training tip sheets/resources.

Session Facilitators:

Ryan Villagran, MSW, (he/him) joined Housing First University in June 2021 as a Training Specialist. Ryan holds a Master of Social Work from Temple University with a concentration in Communities & Policy. His clinical background includes delivering psychiatric rehabilitation services in the mental health recovery model at a Community Integrated Recovery Center. Ryan also developed and coordinated a training program in a university setting for social workers serving transitional-aged youth and later taught a Human Behavior in the Social Environment course for graduate social work students. In addition to his professional social work, Ryan is involved in organizing efforts around ending mass incarceration and believes in the power of our collective imagination to dream of a better future centered around the most vulnerable members of our community.

Andrew Spiers, LSW, (he/him) is the Director of Training and Technical Assistance for Pathways to Housing PA’s Housing First University. Andrew joined Pathways in early 2018 and served as an Assistant Team Leader and Team Leader before launching Housing First University in October 2019. Andrew holds a Master of Social Service from Bryn Mawr College’s Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, where he concentrated in Community Practice, Policy, & Advocacy. He has taught Human Services and Sociology courses as an adjunct professor at Harcum College and conducted trainings and workshops all over the country on Housing First, harm reduction, and affirming care for LGBTQ+ communities.

*CE credit is available to (1) PA Certification Board credentialed professionals, (2) Licensed Social Workers (LSW), and (3) Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSW) ONLY.  Due to current regulations, CE credits cannot be offered to social workers in the states of New Jersey or New York.  All others: please check with your professional licensing board to see if this course qualifies for credit towards your needed continuing education hours.