CANADA: Ontario Hospital Association begins work to prevent suicide

July 31, 2015

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News

A new suicide prevention task force has begun working on a set of mandatory suicide prevention standards that will eventually apply to all of Ontario’s public hospitals. The task force, appointed by the province-wide Ontario Hospital Association (OHA), will build on hospitals’ existing policies and protocols for suicide risk assessment and care, as well as drawing from best practices in use around the world. The project of creating mandatory standards adds to other collaborative efforts by the OHA and provincial government to improve mental health care, including the 2011 release of a framework for standardizing suicide risk assessment across health care institutions. “Suicide is an extremely tragic outcome and devastating for the family and friends of the patient, as well as the care providers,” said Anthony Dale, OHA’s president. “The safety of patients is the first priority of Ontario hospitals, and we are constantly working with them to help improve the care provided.”

Spark Extra! To learn about U.S. efforts to standardize suicide assessment and care in health care settings, check out the Zero Suicide website.