Suicide is the 8th leading cause of death in Idaho, and we continually rank among the top 10 states for the highest number of suicide deaths per capita. Even more, the Southwest region of Idaho has the highest number of suicide deaths than any other region in the state. Southwest District Health is committed to addressing suicide as a critical public health concern. The impact of suicide touches every member of our community. From tight-knit communities to policy stakeholders advocating for behavioral health services, the devastating effect of suicide is widely felt.
The landscape of behavioral health and suicide is changing. We’re having more open conversations, sharing stories, and breaking down the stigma that accompanies suicide. If you’re interested in becoming part of the movement, consider joining the Region 3 Suicide Prevention Coalition. The coalition is made up of survivors, advocates, and clinicians across the region who are committed to eliminating suicide in our communities. The group meets monthly to share resources and training, collaborate on community projects, and promote messages of hope and resilience.
In addition to supporting the efforts of the regional coalition, Southwest District Health coordinates Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) training. This training is geared towards adults that work and engage with adolescents (age 12-18) on a regular basis. The course covers the most common mental and behavioral health challenges for youth and teaches a 5-step plan for how to help youth in both crisis and non-crisis situations.
If you’re interested in joining the coalition to learn more about suicide prevention services in your community or would like to schedule a YMHFA training for your organization, please reach out to at Emily.Straubhar@phd3.idaho.gov.
If you or a loved one are experiencing suicidal thoughts, there is help available. Call or text the Idaho Suicide Prevention Hotline, where someone will listen and help connect you with resources.