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Tulsa's COPES program taking new approach to preventing suicide
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Tulsa's COPES program taking new approach to preventing suicide

Tulsa's COPES program taking new approach to preventing suicide
Photo Credit: Russell Mills

Tulsa's COPES program taking new approach to preventing suicide

Wednesday is World Suicide Prevention Day, and September is National Suicide Prevention Month, so it's fitting that Tulsa's program that deals with psyciatric emergencies is working on rolling out a new program.

The "Zero Suicide Initiative" website explains the idea:

"Zero Suicide is a commitment to suicide prevention in health and behavioral health care systems and also a specific set of tools and strategies. It is both a concept and a practice. Its core proposition is that suicide deaths for people under care are preventable and that the bold goal of zero suicides among persons receiving care is an aspirational challenge that health systems should accept."

Amanda Bradley is Director of Community Outreach Psychiatric Emergency Services (COPES) in Tulsa.

She explains the approach as "we're trying to bring individuals who have had suicidal ideations or have attempted suicide, we're trying to bring them to the table with us to come up with ideas to see what works best to help those people, and to get them through those times."

She says the Robin Williams tragedy has helped draw more attention to a topic that many consider taboo.

"We did see an increase in calls. I think it allowed people to see that there were some warning signs, just by it being put out in the media, and families are recognizing those warning signs in their loved ones or friends, and making the call to try and get them some help."

COPES, part of Tulsa's Family and Children's Services,  offers telephone and mobile services to people in psychiatric crisis, as well as their friends and families.

COPES services are free and offered confidentially to anyone in Tulsa County.

Their phone line is open 24/7 at 918-744-4800.

 

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Washington Insider

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