Youth Suicide Prevention:
A Multi-Site Randomized Control Trial
Suicide is the leading cause of death due to illness among Canadian youth, claiming more lives than any medical illness, including cancer. Youth who present to the Emergency Department (ED) with suicide related thoughts and behaviours often do not receive the immediate care they need. Prevention is possible, and early intervention is urgently needed.
This study is the first clinical trial of a youth suicide intervention in Canada. The SAFE intervention is a brief family-focused program for youth who present to the ED with suicidal ideation. It was originally developed for youth admitted to the Psychiatric Inpatient Unit at SickKids where it continues to be used. We want to know if it will be effective for those who do not stay in hospital.
The study is expanding to include McMaster Children’s Hospital and Alberta Children’s Hospital in addition to SickKids. This is the first step toward developing an effective ED-based suicide prevention program that can be implemented across Canada.