Suicide Prevention: Resources
Resources for Veterans and Their Loved Ones
Suicide Prevention Coordinators
Each VA medical center has a Suicide Prevention Coordinator to provide Veterans with the counseling and services they need. As appropriate, callers to the Veterans Crisis Line are referred to their local Suicide Prevention Coordinator.
Together We Can: Suicide Prevention Information for Veterans, Their Families, and Caregivers
This is a series of in-depth information for Veterans, their families, and caregivers about suicide risks and protective factors. Backed by research, this series provides practical information and steps that family members can take to Be There for a Veteran in their lives. Topics include:
Visit MakeTheConnection.net to hear Veterans’ candid descriptions of dealing with suicidal thoughts and behaviors. A variety of Veterans — men and women, younger and older — talk about their emotions, actions, symptoms, and what they did to get on a path to recovery.
Coaching Into Care
Family members and friends who are seeking care or services for a Veteran can call VA’s Coaching Into Care national telephone service at 888-823-7458. Licensed psychologists and social workers help each caller find appropriate services at a local VA facility or elsewhere in the community.
Suicide Prevention: A Guide for Military and Veteran Families
Family members are often able to tell when a loved one is in crisis because they know that person best. If you think a loved one is suicidal, you may be feeling scared and helpless — but there are ways you can help. This guide will help you recognize when someone is at risk for suicide and understand the actions you can take to help. (Developed by the Rocky Mountain MIRECC)
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Resource Toolkit for Never Federally Activated Former Guard and Reserve Members
This toolkit connects former members of the Guard and Reserves, their families, and their providers with mental health and suicide prevention resources available through VA and in the community.
Information and Support After a Suicide Attempt: A VA Resource Guide for Family Members of Veterans (English/Spanish)
This guide provides Veterans and their families with informational and support resources. It contains information on self-care, care for others (particularly children), and care for the suicide attempt survivor. (Developed by the Rocky Mountain MIRECC)
VA ACE Card and VA ACE Brochure
ACE (“Ask,” “Care,” “Escort”) summarizes the steps that Veterans and their family members and friends can follow to take an active role in suicide prevention. The VA ACE card is a pocket guide supported by the VA ACE brochure, which provides more in-depth information. (Developed by the Rocky Mountain MIRECC)
Reducing Firearm & Other Household Safety Risks for Veterans and Their Families
This brochure provides Veterans and their loved ones with clear guidance on how to safely store medications and firearms when not in use.
Resources for Community Members
Community Outreach Toolkit
This toolkit is an online guide for people and organizations hosting or participating in events to raise awareness about mental health and suicide prevention.
Social Media Safety Toolkit
The Social Media Safety Toolkit includes best practices, resources, and sample posts for responding to social media posts that indicate a Veteran is having thoughts of suicide.
A Toolkit for Safe Firearm Storage in Your Community
This toolkit, compiled by VA, the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), includes tips for safely storing firearms as well as best practices for sharing these guidelines in your community.
Veterans Crisis Line Shareable Materials
Show your support for our Nation’s Veterans and their families and encourage them to get the care they deserve. View and download ready-to-use Veterans Crisis Line materials at VeteransCrisisLine.net/SpreadTheWord to tell people in your networks about this free and confidential resource for all Veterans and their families. You can also:
Share content online.
Post about the Veterans Crisis Line on Facebook and Twitter and share the Veterans Crisis Line website with your friends and followers.
Watch and share videos.
Watch Veterans Crisis Line public service announcements at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Videos and share them with your networks or on your website. You can also download the videos at VeteransCrisisLine.net/SpreadTheWord.
Resources for Providers
From Science to Practice
“From Science to Practice” is a literature review series to help clinicians put suicide prevention research into action. The series translates evidence-based research into informative and practical steps that health care providers can use to help support their Veteran patients. The “From Science to Practice” series describes a number of suicide risk and protective factors. No single risk or protective factor on its own causes or protects against suicide. Topics include:
- Loneliness ‒ A Risk Factor for Suicide
- Premilitary Risk Factors Associated With Suicide Among Veterans
- Military Sexual Trauma ‒ A Risk Factor for Suicide
- Opioid Use and Suicide Risk
- Improving the Safety of Lethal Means Prevents Suicide
- Help With Readjustment and Social Support Needed for Veterans Transitioning From Military Service
- Veterans Ages 18-34 May Require More Intensive Clinical Assessment to Prevent Suicide
- Suicide Among Women Veterans: Risk Factors Associated with Mental Health and Emotional Well-Being
- How Women’s Reproductive Cycles and Sexual Health Affect Their Suicide Risk
- Heightened Risk for Suicide Among Veterans Who Have Experienced Homelessness
- Social Support and Belongingness as Protective Factors
- Promoting The Whole Health for Life Model
- The Effect of Unemployment on Suicide Risk
- Understanding the Role of Geography in Suicide Risk
- Postvention as Prevention: Understanding the Impact of Suicide
- Empathy Integral to Working With Patients at Risk for Suicide
- Helping Veterans Who Have Been Exposed to Interpersonal Violence
- Understanding Nonsuicidal Self-Injury and Suicide Risk Among Veterans
- Understanding the Relationship Between Altitude and Suicide Risk
- Healthy Ways to Cope With Emotional Distress Are Important for Suicide Prevention
Community Provider Toolkit
This toolkit supports the behavioral health and wellness of Veterans receiving services outside the VA health care system.
Suicide Risk Management Consultation Program
VA providers and community providers who work with Veterans can receive free, one-on-one consultation to enhance their therapeutic practice. To get started, email SRMconsult@va.gov. The administrative staff will set you up with the consultant who can best answer your questions. (Developed by the Rocky Mountain MIRECC)
Means Safety Messaging for Clinical Staff
This pocket card provides a framework for clinicians on how to talk with Veteran patients about safe firearm and medication storage, as well as options for safe storage.
Resources for Communicating About Veteran Suicide
- Safe Messaging Best Practices Fact Sheet
Research has shown that the way we communicate about suicide can influence behavior in a positive or negative way. Adapted from the Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide, this fact sheet offers guidance on how to communicate about suicide in a safe and ethical manner, correct misconceptions, convey hope, and encourage help-seeking behaviors among those at risk for suicide.