Press release

HSE launch 'Let's Talk About Suicide' - a new online suicide prevention training programme

Published: 9 May 2024

A new, free, online suicide prevention training programme, ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’, is now available, aiming to save more lives from suicide in Ireland.

Developed by the HSE National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP), ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’ is for everyone, especially for people who are supporting a loved one or those involved in their local communities. It helps participants to identify people who might be at risk of suicide, confidently ask about suicide, keep them safe, and connect them with resources that can help.

Speaking at the launch, Mary Butler, TD, Minister for Mental Health and Older Persons said:

"I warmly welcome the launch of ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’, a fantastic new, free, online suicide prevention training programme. Suicide is a major public health issue with far-reaching consequences for families, friends and communities.  Everyone has a role to play in suicide reduction and this easily accessible resource will help many people develop the skills to talk comfortably about suicide, and support those in distress, as well as further dispel societal discomfort with speaking openly about this issue.

Let’s Talk About Suicide’ aligns with the goals of Connecting for Life, our national suicide reduction strategy, and its focus on stigma reduction, mental health promotion, and early intervention. As Minister for Mental Health and Older People, I welcome this new tool which will surely help us to achieve our objective of reducing suicide in Ireland.”

Damien McCallion, HSE Chief Operations Officer, said:

“The introduction of ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’ marks an important milestone in the HSEs commitments in Connecting for Life, Ireland’s National Strategy to Reduce Suicide (2015-2024), which include the development, coordination, quality assurance, monitoring and evaluation of a suite of suicide prevention education and training programmes in Ireland.

Indeed, the HSE maintains a steadfast high-level commitment to promote our population’s mental health and reduce suicide, as outlined in our National Service Plan for 2024. I would like to thank all who have contributed to this new and innovative programme, that we hope will ultimately, save lives.”

John Meehan, HSE Assistant National Director and Head of NOSP said:

"We are very proud to introduce this short, accessible and introductory suicide prevention programme, and make it available to everyone over the age of 18 in Ireland.

“At any time in our personal or professional lives, any one of us might encounter a person who is in distress, or who needs a listening ear at a difficult time. It is important that we all feel prepared for such conversations whenever they arise, be able to recognise the signs that a person is struggling, and feel confident in asking about suicide, when we need to.  We encourage everyone to take some time out to complete ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’, and to do their part in reducing the stigma associated with speaking openly about our mental health, and suicide”.

About the programme:

  • On average, it will take 60 minutes to complete, but participants can work at their own pace.
  • It is an introductory programme that is suitable for anyone over the age of 18.
  • It is recommended that anyone recently bereaved wait 12 months before engaging in this type of suicide prevention training.
  • Participants do not need to complete any training before ‘Let’s Talk About Suicide’. In fact, it is a helpful introduction to the topic for anyone considering attending more comprehensive training programmes in the future. These might include more advanced face-to-face programmes (such as safeTALK or ASIST) available from the HSE.

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