Study advises increase in behavioral health services to prevent suicides in military
A new RAND corporation study suggests that emergency interventions are far less effective in preventing suicide attempts than the delivery of high-quality care through behavioral health treatment services.
The researchers suggested a number of potential reforms that military officials may undertake. For one, all divisions may adopt a common surveillance program to identify suicide risks. They should also increase access to mental and behavioral health services, promote self-care among service members and develop support programs for other members in the wake of a colleague's death.
Rajeev Ramchand, the study's lead author, noted that "efforts should focus on changing the culture at all levels of the military to encourage those in distress to seek help along with efforts to identify and intervene with service members who are at risk of suicide."
The Department of Defense tasked RAND with evaluating the reasons for the increase in suicide rates. Since 2001, military suicide rates have increased from 10 to 16 percent. The predominant number of incidents have occurred in the Army.
The study's findings may interest Masters of Social Work students who research mental health issues.
POSTED BY: ec_admin - February 19th, 2011 at 03:51pm ( 0 )