NARMC recently hosted an ASIST class taught by Velvet Schoults and Clark Wilkerson.
“The ASIST class was created by a company called Living Works. Our specific class was funded by the Northwest Trauma Trac Injury Prevention Grant through the Arkansas Department of Health. It is normally a $300 course that was provided free in our area through this program,” Lauren Elliott, RN, Quality Follow up nurse, Stroke Coordinator said. “We had 20 in our class ranging from Nurses, ER Techs, EMTs, Law Enforcement, Teachers and Counselors all from Harrison and surrounding areas- Basically all over our NARMC service area. Anybody can attend this course and use the skills learned to recognize the signs and symptoms of suicide and act to bring that person to immediate safety.”
NARMC staff noticed an immediate need for suicide awareness and decided to act on it. The ASIST class is such a great option for individuals because anybody can take it and apply it to any form of career or person life issues that arise.
“It creates a very great method to getting the person at risk to a safer place right now during the time of crisis. We wanted to be able to offer it to every aspect of our community, no matter what your professional background is,” Lauren added.
What attendees had to say:
“I learned how to better approach people that might be at risk for suicide. What impacted me the most was the role-playing. Having to sit in front of someone and ask them about suicide as well as being the person at risk of suicide and having to put yourself in that person’s shoes. “ Kara Snider, RN, Trauma Coordinator
“The ASIST class taught me ways to approach a person that I felt might be at risk for suicide. It helped me to be more comfortable with broaching such a sensitive topic with knowledge to help someone in need.” Lauren Elliott, RN, Quality Follow up nurse, Stroke Coordinator
“As a RN student, and as a Nurse Tech II in the ER, I have learned to better talk with our patients who are dealing with mental crisis. It is such a needed and often overlooked skill to have in the ER setting, and will better prepare me for the clinical setting when helping Behavioral Health patients.” Christina Bracken, ER Nurse Tech II
“I now know how to react when told that a student may have suicidal thoughts. I hope that I don’t have to use this knowledge, but I am prepared to do so to keep a person safe and get them to more qualified personnel.” Micki Marshall School counselor, Western Grove
The Living work website lists upcoming courses for ASIST and other training programs. For more information, visit https://www.livingworks.net/.