MONTANA — A world-renowned researcher in the field of suicide prevention spoke with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Montana to talk about the latest research in suicide prevention.
“One of the difficulties in suicide prevention is that we have a lot of opinions, but the kind of rigorous evidence that is applied to other types of healthcare problem is often not applied in the same way through suicide prevention," says Dr. Mann.
Dr. J. John Mann published 458 papers and edited ten books on the topic of suicidal behavior and mental health. Dr. Mann visited NAMI Montana through a webinar to discuss his latest research that will soon be published into the American Journal of Psychiatry. Dr. Mann focuses on evidenced-based suicide prevention methods that can be utilize to help patients rather than feelings and opinions that he claims happens too much with providers.
“This is part of a very subtle, incursion of stigma into our thinking,” says Dr. Mann. “Somehow it's okay for anybody to express their opinion based on what they feel rather than what the facts are."
Since 2014, Montana has been near, or at, the top of the CDC's rankings for death-rate in regards to suicide. In 2020, a report recorded Montana wasn’t in the Top 3 in suicide in year 2018 for the first time within the last decade. NAMI Montana Executive Director, Matt Kuntz, feels confident Montana can continue to make progress within suicide prevention using the latest in research data.
“I was really happy to hear what we're doing right and can double down on,” says Kuntz. “In the past decade, the State of Montana really moved in the direction of research-proven suicide prevention. It's a great foundation to build upon.”
Dr. Mann is also the Director of the National Institute on Mental Health Conte Center for the Neuroscience of Mental Disorders. Click here to learn more about the center.