Portland, Maine – Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has awarded Maine Behavioral Healthcare (MBH) a five-year, $2 million grant ($400,000 per year for five years) to implement elements of a Zero Suicide framework. The funding will be used to launch the project Life Worth Living to reduce suicide ideation, suicide attempts, and deaths due to suicide among adults residing in eight rural counties across southern, western, and coastal Maine.
Zero Suicide is a program focused on error reduction, training, communication, and education. MBH began adoption of the national Zero Suicide initiative in 2020 with the firm belief that suicide is preventable. The grant funds will allow MBH to continue and expand on those efforts.
“There is no doubt that this grant will help save lives,” said Dr. Linda Durst, MBH Chief Medical Officer, and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Maine Medical Center. “Suicide ranks higher as a cause of death for virtually every age group in our target area when compared to the rest of the country making this an urgent public health matter. I am so proud of the passion, energy, and commitment of our dedicated care team members to improve suicide care across our continuum of services and at every level of the organization.”
The project is expected to serve approximately 12,500 unduplicated individuals per year.
About Maine Behavioral Healthcare:
As part of MaineHealth, Maine Behavioral Healthcare (MBH) is a not-for-profit organization serving more than 20,000 children, adolescents and adults at over 30 locations throughout southern, western, and mid-coast Maine, providing a continuum of coordinated mental healthcare from outpatient community offices to inpatient acute care at Spring Harbor Hospital. Learn more at www.mainebehavioralhealthcare.org.