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Province invests in suicide care improvements

The B.C. government is spending $2 million to create a provincewide standard of care and training to help people with thoughts of suicide and self-harm.

Provincial officials said a provincial framework will be developed based on best practices, local clinical knowledge and the perspectives of people with lived experiences.

“When people are in a mental health crisis, we want them to receive the best possible care,” said Sheila Malcolmson, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions in a release.

“We’re supporting health-care professionals so that they have the tools they need to provide the best possible care for people and reduce suicide deaths.”

The framework will include standardized intake screening, management strategies and follow-up care.

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Suicide has been declining in B.C. over the past few years.

In 2021, 582 suicide deaths were investigated, down from 597 in 2020 and 634 in 2019.

Money will also be spread between the regional health authorities to help target unique priorities or gaps in current care.

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