LOUISVILLE, Ky. –  Last year 756 Kentuckians died by suicide, making it the state’s 11th leading cause of death, 2nd among those ages 10-34. During National Suicide Prevention Week, September 5th – 11th, UofL Health – Peace Hospital and Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear are calling on everyone to help those in crisis find resources and save lives.

“With the mental health challenges many people have faced during the pandemic, it is more important than ever to be supportive, to make sure they realize they are not alone, for us to know the signs and to take immediate action to help those in crisis,” said Gov. Beshear. “Through the remainder of this pandemic and as we emerge, we must look out for our fellow Kentuckians and protect one another to prevent us from losing more beloved family members, friends and neighbors to suicide.”

Suicide prevention demands immediate action. If someone says they are thinking about suicide:

  • Take them seriously
  • Listen
  • Don’t leave them alone
  • Help them get to a professional for evaluation at treatment

Peace Hospital, is among the largest behavioral health facilities in the nation, providing care for children, adolescents and adults. The hospital offers 24/7 no-charge assessments and support for all ages.

“More than 10 million Americans will have thoughts about suicide every year. We lost a heartbreaking 756 Kentuckians last year. One is too many,” said Martha Mather, Chief Administrative Officer of UofL Health – Peace Hospital. “It is important we talk about suicide and mental health. The more we talk about it, it reduces the stigma. And the more we know about it, the better prepared we are to step in to help.”

In partnership with the National Alliance on Mental Health Illness (NAMI) of Louisville and the Louisville Health Advisory Board, Peace Hospital supports the goal of training 2,021 people in FREE Suicide Prevention (QPR) training.

QPR–Question, Persuade, Refer–are the three steps anyone can learn to help prevent suicide. Just like CPR, QPR is an emergency response to someone in crisis and can save lives. QPR’s mission is to reduce suicidal behaviors and save lives by providing one of the most effective and widely taught suicide prevention training. This training is essential because, regardless of your background, quality education empowers all people to make a positive difference in the life of someone they know.

“The isolation and uncertainty caused by a global pandemic is unavoidable. But we must acknowledge how it has greatly affected the mental health of our students,” said Lt. Gov. Coleman. “According to the Kentucky Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 15% of Kentucky high school students reported having seriously considered suicide within a 12-month period. We must all work together to solve this epidemic. I applaud UofL – Health Peace Hospital for being a vital partner in this work.”

QPR training is FREE, available online via Zoom, and open to anyone. To register for QPR training, go to: https://namilouisville.org/qpr/qpr-training-louisville-metro/. More information on suicide facts and statistics in Kentucky is available here.

IMPORTANT: If you find yourself having suicidal thoughts, dial 911 immediately, go to a nearby hospital or:

Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK 

Visit Peace Hospital’s Assessment and Referral Center for 24/7 No Charge Assessments:

In Louisville: 502-451-3333

In Lexington & eastern KY: 859-313-3515