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Program Evaluation and Decision Analytic Modelling of Universal Suicide Prevention Training (safeTALK) in Secondary Schools

Author

Listed:
  • Irina Kinchin

    () (University of Technology Sydney
    Central Queensland University)

  • Alex M. T. Russell

    () (Central Queensland University)

  • Dennis Petrie

    () (Monash University)

  • Adrianne Mifsud

    () (Mercy College)

  • Laurence Manning

    () (Grapevine Group)

  • Christopher M. Doran

    () (Central Queensland University)

Abstract

Background Universal suicide education and awareness training in schools are promising suicide prevention initiatives. This study aims to evaluate a suicide awareness training (safeTALK) and to model potential return on investment (ROI) on a population basis. SafeTALK, comprises a 3-h education session, and has been delivered to secondary school students (aged 15–16 years) in Mackay, located in the Australian state of Queensland. Methods Evaluation consisted of two phases, ex-post and ex-ante. Phase I was a pre-post, follow-up analysis using a mixed-method questionnaire administered immediately prior (Time 1), immediately after (Time 2), and 4 weeks after training (Time 3). Phase II involved decision analytic modelling comparing safeTALK to the status quo. ROI was modelled using Markov chains for a hypothetical population of students aged 15–19 years in Mackay (n = 2561; suicide rate 78.1 per 100,000), Queensland (n = 296,287; 10.2) and Australia (n = 1,421,595; 8.3). Model parameters, including rates of hospitalised self-harm and suicide, cost implications and effectiveness of safeTALK were drawn from published literature. The baseline model adapted a health and justice system’s perspective, with an alternative model incorporating a societal perspective. All costs were adjusted to reflect AU$2017–2018. Results Students reported seeking help mostly from friends (79%) or parents (68%); in the last 6 months 61% considered another student’s behaviour as suicidal, but only 21% reported asking about this. The main barriers to help-seeking were (i) being too embarrassed, (ii) shy or (iii) being judged. Students who attended safeTALK gained suicide-related knowledge (p

Suggested Citation

  • Irina Kinchin & Alex M. T. Russell & Dennis Petrie & Adrianne Mifsud & Laurence Manning & Christopher M. Doran, 2020. "Program Evaluation and Decision Analytic Modelling of Universal Suicide Prevention Training (safeTALK) in Secondary Schools," Applied Health Economics and Health Policy, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 311-324, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:aphecp:v:18:y:2020:i:2:d:10.1007_s40258-019-00505-3
    DOI: 10.1007/s40258-019-00505-3
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    Cited by:

    1. Christopher M Doran & Irina Kinchin, 2020. "Economic and epidemiological impact of youth suicide in countries with the highest human development index," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 15(5), pages 1-11, May.
    2. Christopher M. Doran & Irina Kinchin, 2020. "Economics of Mental Health: Providing a Platform for Efficient Mental Health Policy," Applied Health Economics and Health Policy, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 143-145, April.

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