The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), in collaboration with PsychArmor Institute, a national nonprofit that provides online education and support to Americans who work with, live with or care for military service members, Veterans and their families, recently launched an online suicide-prevention training video, titled “SAVE,” which is designed to equip anyone who interacts with Veterans to demonstrate care, support and compassion when talking with a Veteran who could be at risk for suicide.
SAVE which stands for Signs, Ask, Validate, Encourage and Expedite, offers simple steps anyone — whether a treatment provider, clinician, friend or family member — can take when talking with Veterans at risk for suicide.
“VA is leading efforts to prevent suicide among Veterans, but VA alone cannot end Veteran suicide,” said VA Acting Secretary Peter O’Rourke. “We need strategic partners, care providers and communities to join us in this effort. Resources such as SAVE are crucial in helping all Americans support Veterans in their community.”
VA suicide prevention coordinators have led the SAVE course at VA facilities and community centers across the nation. VA officials said extending and promoting this important training outside VA is critical in helping everyone play a role in suicide prevention.
The free training video can be viewed at psycharmor.org/courses/s-a-v-e/. The 25-minute online training course covers three main topics:
- Suicide as a public health issue in the U.S.
- Signs that a Veteran may be at risk for suicide
- Actions people can take if they identify a Veteran at risk.
Veterans in crisis or having thoughts of suicide — and anyone who knows a Veteran in crisis — should call the Veterans Crisis Line for confidential support 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. Call 800-273-8255 and press 1, chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat or text to 838255.
Reporters covering the topic of suicide are encouraged to visit www.reportingonsuicide.org/ for important guidance.