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Crisis. 2007;28(1):35-43.

Suicide prevention training outside the mental health service system: evaluation of a state-wide program in Australia for rehabilitation and disability staff in the field of traumatic brain injury.

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  • 1Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit, Liverpool Hospital, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.


The training needs of staff working in mainstream (i.e., noncrisis) health settings with client groups that have moderate levels of suicide risk have not been extensively addressed. An initiative to train rehabilitation and disability staff working in the field of traumatic brain injury (TBI) is described. A program was adapted from a generic state health department training program, and disseminated by means of established training networks within the brain injury field. Program efficacy was evaluated as the training was provided across the state of Victoria in a series of 1-day workshops. Participants (n = 86) completed two evaluation measures designed for this purpose (objective knowledge test, self-rating of knowledge and skills) on three occasions (pre- and postworkshop, 6-month follow-up). Compared to a control group of rehabilitation and disability workers who did not receive the training (n = 27), the workshop participants made significant gains in objective knowledge and reported skills, and maintained these gains at the 6-month follow-up. The Suicide Interview Response Inventory-2 (Neimeyer & Pfeiffer, 1994) was administered to a subgroup of participants as a validating measure, and correlated significantly with scores from the objective knowledge test. This process may provide a template for developing more fine-grained suicide prevention strategies among other health-related at-risk groups.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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