In a new analysis, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have outlined the need for a suicide prevention approach that is public health based and not only restricted to behavioral health settings. The authors conclude that a prevention approach that reaches more than those who have been marked as high risk may be necessary. To achieve that, they suggest relying on existing public health infrastructure to "collect and analyze relevant data, select and implement comprehensive prevention strategies... and conduct rigorous and ongoing evaluation of interventions" that may help avert deaths.
The CDC analysis also reviews existing literature on public health prevention strategies that have proven effective. A combination of de-stigmatizing the need for help and making that help available was a prominently successful approach. At a more basic level, training people to ask for and accept help in any emotionally challenging situation has yielded decreased suicides and higher perceptions of community support. Behavioral health training in elementary school classrooms has been associated with decreased suicidal ideation at young ages. All of the reviewed approaches involved short-term training in groups and the promotion of resources for emotional support.