White House Partners on Suicide Prevention

In commemoration of Global Suicide Prevention Month and Global Mental Health Day, the White House Offices of Science and Technology Policy and Public Engagement, in collaboration withJoining Forces, are bringing together clinicians, researchers, data scientists, tool developers, advocates, and policy makers to share their knowledge, experience, and skills in an effort to identify new opportunities for strengthening mental health awareness and suicide prevention.

Our team will be attending the 12/12 White House and VA at Hackathon for Suicide Prevention Data at MIT on December 12 (#mentalhealthhackathon) and hope to make a solid showing and contribution.  Here is an excerpt from the invite:

Approximately one in five American adults—our friends, colleagues, and loved ones—experience a diagnosable mental health condition like depression or post-traumatic stress at some time during their life. Recovery often occurs with treatment. Yet some Americans still suffer with undiagnosed, undertreated, or untreated mental health challenges that increases their risk for suicide, leading to more than 41,000 U.S. deaths each year. In addition, these invisible wounds are impacting our nation’s Patriots – the Veteran community.  On average, there are 22 Veteran suicides a day.  More needs to be done to help serve those who have served us.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are more than 800,000 deaths by suicide each year – more than 41,000of them in the United States.  These rates have not substantially changed over the last 30 years despite many efforts to improve suicide prevention, outreach, and engagement.  Along with those needless losses of life are family members and friends who are left with regret, guilt, and sadness. This event will take people out of their professional silos, bring fresh eyes and new perspectives to the problem, and forge new partnerships to develop innovative approaches to suicide prevention.

Read the entire announcement here.

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