This training program addresses suicide prevention among older adults and elders.
The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 greatly increased some of the known risk factors for elder suicide, including social isolation. While this risk factor is addressed in this training program, we wish to advise our students to be especially aware of, and support, all community and policy efforts to reduce social isolation in our elders.
The training program
After presenting expert foundation brief lectures on older adult suicide risk, the QPR Gatekeeper Training for Suicide Prevention is presented, together with best-practice screening questions that those providing care to older adults may use to detect what potentially unknown risk for suicidal behaviors.
As an approved adaptation of the NREPP-listed QPR Gatekeeper Training for Suicide Prevention training program, this course does not address comprehensive suicide risk assessment, risk formulation, or clinical decision making based upon a risk stratification determination.
This is not a train-the-trainer course, and thus does not include instructor guidelines, lesson plans, or student handouts.
Given the time constraints many eldercare workers are under to complete new training, this self-paced course is segmented into many brief learning modules. The course is open for a full year so that learners can log in and out of the course to complete modules as time is available. The training is available on any PC or mobile device. Videos are no longer supported on the browser Internet Explorer. Please use Chrome browser or Firefox browser for the best experience (download Chrome or download Firefox).
If you are tasked with the assessment of suicide risk, please select a more robust training option which includes training in how to conduct a suicide risk assessment interview, formulate and document assessed risk, and manage risk over time.
Participants completing this program should be able to:
o Understand suicide, including older adult suicide, as a major public health problem
o Understand the major risk factors for late-life psychiatric problems and suicide
o Understand the common myths and facts surrounding suicide
o Identify unique verbal, behavioral, and situational suicide warning signs
o Recognize at least three elder suicide warning signs
o Recognize at least three risk factors for older adult suicide
o Recognize at least three protective factors against suicide for older adults
o Know how to engage and assist a suicidal older adult
o Use the QPR suicide screen with other paper-and-pencil screening and brief assessment tools, e.g., the PHQ-9, Geriatric Suicide Ideation Scale.
o Remove or limit access to the means of suicide
o Be familiar with "hand off" procedures to alert other staff of elders at risk for suicide
o Create a collaborative safety plan which includes follow-up care, peer support, and emergency numbers
o Know what crisis materials, phone numbers, and family information to provide when the patient arrives at a hospital or other point of care site
o Be familiar with evidence-based treatments that specifically target suicidal behavior in elders
o Document decisions regarding the care and referral of elders screened positive for suicide ideation or attempts