Suicide Prevention Week: Operation SAVE Training Not Just for Health Professionals

Suicide Prevention Week: Operation SAVE Training Not Just for Health Professionals

As a part of suicide prevention week, mental health professionals from the area put on an Operation SAVE training at the YMCA Tuesday night, stressing the importance of being able to address the issue of suicide and lead a person to help if they need it.

Vanessa Hastings, Prevention Coordinator with the Northern Wyoming Mental Health center and director of the Suicide Prevention Coalition, talked about one situation that should always be followed by these steps.

SAVE stands for: Signs of suicidal thinking, Ask questions, Validate the person's experience, and Encourage treatment and Expedite getting help. This process was discussed in a one-hour training that addresses myths and facts that surround the issue of talking about suicide.

It is a strategy not just for health professionals, Hastings says.

The training exercise was conducted by Hastings, Melinda Fairbanks and Edgar Pretty On Top, suicide prevention coordinators at the VA Medical Center.

For more information on the free training call the Suicide Prevention Coalition at 763-3055 or the VAMC at 672-3473. The national suicide hotline is 800-273-TALK (8255).

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