Suicide Prevention Australia launches Quality Improvement Program

Posted 8th July 2020 in Research General

In June, Suicide Prevention Australia launched the Suicide Prevention Quality Improvement Program, developed in collaboration with the suicide prevention sector.

The Suicide Prevention Quality Improvement Program is a national framework to guide the development and implementation of safe and high-quality suicide prevention programs and services in Australia.

Why was it developed?

The Suicide Prevention Quality Improvement Program is designed to support the suicide prevention sector. 

Assuring the safety, quality and efficacy of Australia’s suicide prevention programs is a focus of the suicide prevention sector, government, commissioning agents and the Australian community at large. 

The importance of having standards that assure services and programs are safe, quality and outcomes-based is highlighted in The Fifth Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan.

“This program is unique and benefits providers by placing their suicide prevention programs on a self-directed course that is useful, purposeful, user-friendly and relevant to their needs,” said Simon Pont, Director Quality Systems and Practice at Suicide Prevention Australia.

“Importantly, the program provides the community with an assurance that Australia’s suicide prevention programs are safe, high quality, and provide a consistent standard of care for the people they are designed to help.”

What does the program involve?

Australian suicide prevention programs are able to be measured against six fit-for-purpose standards. The standards were developed in collaboration with the suicide prevention sector, and include co-design with people with lived experience of suicide, evaluation and knowledge translation, and diversity and inclusion. The full standards are available on the Suicide Prevention Australia website.

This self-directed Quality Improvement Program includes a process of self-assessment, certification and accreditation. Accreditation is provided by an independent assessor, Quality Innovation Performance.    

Organisations that receive accreditation or are registered to work towards accreditation, will have the opportunity to be listed in the national register of suicide prevention accredited programs and services. A national register will be hosted on the Suicide Prevention Australia website and highlighted on the Life in Mind website.

Who is it for?

The Suicide Prevention Quality Improvement Program is for all suicide prevention programs in Australia. A suicide prevention program is one that is implemented to address, prevent or respond to suicidal behaviours and their impact on people, families, communities and the Australian population.

Any of the programs and services listed on the Life in Mind directory are able to register.

How are Suicide Prevention Australia and Life in Mind working together on this program?

Life in Mind is the national suicide prevention portal which acts as a central place to collect and share knowledge on what is happening across Australia to support suicide prevention efforts. 

The Programs and Services directory houses a collection of suicide prevention programs and services for people working in the suicide prevention sector, as well as those in mental health, government, business or community groups.

Life in Mind is working with Suicide Prevention Australia on ways to effectively highlight programs and services which are involved with the Quality Improvement Program either with current accreditation or working towards accreditation. 

Amanda McAtamney, Life in Mind Project Lead welcomes this opportunity to continue working with Suicide Prevention Australia on this important piece of work. 

“As a sector working to enhance research and evaluation of our suicide prevention programs, it is important to ensure we are collecting the evidence about what works, for which audiences and in which environments. We value the opportunity to collaborate with our sector colleagues, and ensure we are sharing knowledge,” said Ms McAtamney. 

How can I get started towards accreditation of my program or service?

Organisations can register an interest for the Suicide Prevention Quality Improvement Program via the link at expression of interest. An introductory webinar to answer any questions will be provided to organisations registering an interest.

If an organisation is unsure if the program or service is suitable for the Quality Improvement Program, please contact Suicide Prevention Australia on qip@suicidepreventionaust.org.

Further information can also be found by visiting https://lifeinmindaustralia.com.au/programs-resources/suicide-prevention-australia-quality-improvement-program