The Zero Suicide framework is defined by a system-wide, organizational commitment to safer suicide care in health and behavioral health care systems. It represents a culture shift away from fragmented suicide care toward a holistic and comprehensive commitment to patient safety—the most fundamental responsibility of health care.
The National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (NSSP) calls for the promotion of suicide prevention as a core component of health care services and for improved professional and clinical practices in identifying and caring for those at risk. The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention (Action Alliance) is the public-private partnership advancing the NSSP.
The Action Alliance described an approach for optimal care based on suicide rate reductions realized in health care systems that employed a bundled set of best practices. With support from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), these recommendations were operationalized into seven core components necessary for health care systems to transform suicide care. These seven components are at the core of the Zero Suicide framework.
- Lead system-wide culture change committed to reducing suicides
- Train a competent, confident, and caring workforce
- Identify patients with suicide risk via comprehensive screening and assessment
- Engage all individuals at-risk of suicide using a suicide care management plan
- Treat suicidal thoughts and behaviors using evidence-based treatments
- Transition individuals through care with warm hand-offs and supportive contacts
- Improve policies and procedures through continuous quality improvement
Explore the Zero Suicide Toolkit
To assist health and behavioral health organizations in their adoption of the Zero Suicide framework, the Suicide Prevention Resource Center (SPRC) offers free and publicly available tools, strategies, and resources through the Zero Suicide toolkit.
Zero Suicide Framework
Discover how the Zero Suicide framework can transform your system for safer suicide care.
Zero Suicide Toolkit
Learn about the seven elements of safer suicide care at the core of the Zero Suicide approach.
Zero Suicide Resources
Explore a multi-source collection of implementation tools and readings.