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Preventing Suicide in General Practice – Quality Improvement Program

The purpose of this project was to work with general practices to identify how they could further improve skills and confidence of GPs and the whole practice team, to identify and manage risk of suicide.

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Funder: North Western Melbourne PHN

Duration: February 2020 – July 2020

As part of this project, North Western Melbourne PHN invited GP practices in the Brimbank, Melton and the Macedon Ranges LGAs to participate in a six month quality improvement program on suicide prevention. The purpose of the program was to work with practices to identify how they could further improve the skills and confidence of GPs and the whole practice team, to identify and manage patients at risk of suicide.

The project worked with three practices in Macedon Ranges – Neal Street (Gisborne), Brooke Street Medical Centre (Woodend) and Riddle Country Practice. Practice activities ranged from building the capacity of reception staff to recognise and respond to patients at increased risk of suicidality, to increasing access to psychiatric services for local residents. Nominated staff from all three practices also participated in the Advanced Training in Suicide Prevention from Black Dog Institute.

Practices will continue to implement the improvement activities identified through the program and embed positive changes aimed at recognising and supporting patients at risk.