Photographed at the recent Suicide Prevention Awareness event at Abraham Clark High School in Roselle are Trinitas Regional Medical Center staff members, standing, Agnes Brophy, Trinitas' School Based Program, and Krizia Medrano, Crisis Mobile Response and Stabilization team. Seated are Lizzie Zimmer, Crisis Mobile Response and Stabilization team and Nancy Mooney, Child and Family Crisis Clinician.

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Doug Harris

Yolanda Fleming

Trinitas conducts program on suicide prevention for teens

The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention reports that in 2011 (the most recent year for which data are available), 39,518 suicides were reported, making suicide the 10th leading cause of death for Americans. To compile those statistics, the CDC calculates the country's suicide rate each year that expresses the number of suicide deaths that occur for every 100,000 people in the population for which the rate is reported. Middle age adults have the highest suicide rate followed by the elderly. Younger groups have had consistently lower suicide rates than these groups. In 2011, adolescents and young adults aged 15 to 24 had a suicide rate of 11.0 among 100,000 people.

With the belief that no one, especially teenagers and young adults, should become one of these statistics, members of the Behavioral Health and Psychiatry Department at Trinitas Regional Medical Center conducted an information day highlighting Suicide Prevention Awareness Month for faculty and students at Abraham Clark High School in Roselle. The Behavioral Health Department, along with the Traumatic Loss Coalition (TLC) and Trinitas' School Based Youth Services Program, sponsored the event that nearly 170 teen and faculty members attended.

Nancy Mooney, Child and Family Crisis Clinician, Krizia Medrano and Lizzie Zimmer of the Crisis Mobile Response and Stabilization team, and Agnes Brophy of Trinitas' School Based Program facilitated the event that helped teens understand how they can cope with what they may consider insurmountable problems or issues that they think cannot be solved. The mental health professionals stressed that there is help for emotional distress. They further emphasized the value of coping mechanisms that can help a young person reconsider a decision that could lead to suicide. Hotline Information, stress balls, and wristbands bearing positive messages, such as "Strength," "Hope," and "Faith" were distributed to remind students to put their coping skills into practice and to reach out when needed.

Nancy Mooney was encouraged by the outcome of the event, explaining, "It was great to see how well the event was received by those who participated.

As mental health professionals, all too often we see the difficulties that young people face that may lead them to consider suicide. We were pleased to bring his proactive/preventive program to these young people to help them realize that despair can be replaced by hope and help from a mental health professional is only a phone call away."


About Trinitas Regional Medical Center
Trinitas Regional Medical Center (TRMC), a major center for comprehensive health services for those who live and work in Central New Jersey, is a Catholic teaching medical center sponsored by the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth in partnership with Elizabethtown Healthcare Foundation. With 10 Centers of Excellence across the continuum of care, Trinitas has distinguished itself in cardiology, cancer care, behavioral health, renal care, nursing education, diabetes management, wound healing and sleep medicine.

Posted: September 25, 2014

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