ROCHESTER, Minn. – Olmsted County has joined a statewide suicide prevention effort.
The Minnesota Department of Health’s (MDH) Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention Strategic Planning Cohort is a one-year commitment consisting of monthly learning sessions, activities, and planning documents.
“Olmsted County identified mental health in its 2021-2023 Olmsted County Community Health Improvement Plan as one of three priorities in the Community Health Needs Assessment,” says Olmsted County Public Health Services (OCPHS) Community Health Specialist Talor Gray. “Participating in this cohort provides the community with additional educational resources and structure to continue building these ongoing conversations locally and to implement strategic goals.”
Organizers say the goal of the planning cohort is to support both training and technical assistance to address mental health promotion and suicide prevention using a collaborative approach with community partners that ensures every person receives the same level of care. It is targeting the following goals:
- Support healthy and empowered individuals, families, and communities to increase protection from suicide risk
- Coordinate the implementation of effective programs by clinical and community preventive service providers to promote wellness, build resilience, and prevent suicidal behaviors
- Increase the timeliness and usefulness of data systems relevant to suicide prevention and improve the ability to collect, analyze, and use this information for action
“Olmsted County strives to take action to prevent suicide in the community,” says Olmsted County Commission Chair Stephanie Podulke. “Joining the strategic planning cohort is a great tool to develop a plan on local prevention efforts.”
September 10 is World Suicide Prevention Awareness Day. If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or use the Crisis Text Line by texting MN to 741741. People can also access qualified counselors provided by Crisis Response of Southeast Minnesota.
MDH says death certificates show 723 Minnesota residents died by suicide in 2020. That is the sixth year in a row in which over 700 Minnesotans died by suicide.