Course Title: Increase the safety of individuals at risk of suicide

Part A: Course Overview

Program: C4364 Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs

Course Title: Increase the safety of individuals at risk of suicide

Portfolio: DSC Portfolio Office

Nominal Hours: 110

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365T Global, Urban and Social Studies


Term2 2016,
Term2 2017,
Term2 2018

Course Contact: Chris Walters

Course Contact Phone: +613 9925 8268

Course Contact Email:

Course Description

This unit describes the skills and knowledge to identify and manage immediate suicide risk and work with the individual to achieve safe outcomes. It includes the requirements for developing a clear safety plan for addressing any immediate danger to the person at risk or others, mobilising access to emergency medical help when needed and facilitating links with further support.

This unit applies to people in formal helping roles in any community service context. Suicide safety may involve face-to-face, telephone or remote contact with the person involved

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


National Competency Codes and Titles

National Element Code & Title:

CHCCCS003 Increase the safety of individuals at risk of suicide


1. Identify and assess the person’s current suicide risk

1.1 Recognise and respond to signs indicating that a person may be considering suicide
1.2 Explore any indications, direct or indirect, that the person may be considering suicide
1.3 Ask specifically about thoughts of suicide whenever there are grounds for concern
1.4 Inform and facilitate the intervention by seeking understanding of why the person is considering suicide and what links them to life

2. Collaborate to increase immediate safety

2.1 Build a collaborative empathic helping relationship that acknowledges how thoughts of suicide and the pain behind them may affect their safety
2.2 Listen to what lies behind any thoughts of suicide while affirming and strengthening life connections and safety support
2.3 Work with the person to develop and implement a safety plan that reduces immediate danger to the person and others
2.4 Mobilise access to emergency services when needed
2.5 Comply with all laws, relevant ethical guidelines and policy requirements that affect duty of care and seek any advice from workplace supervisor

3. Facilitate links to further support

3.1 Empower the person at risk to make informed choices about further help
3.2 Maintain rapport to encourage discussion of on-going concerns
3.3 Help the person identify coping strategies to manage recurrence of suicidal thoughts
3.4 Determine whether underlying mental health concerns or personal circumstances are present and facilitate access to appropriate help
3.5 Explore possible barriers to seeking or accepting help and develop responses
3.6 Explore what has helped the person survive any previous suicide attempts
3.7 Develop a plan with the individual that includes agreed first steps to access and use informal supports and professional help
3.8 Refer to appropriate professionals as required

4. Review and report on support provided

4.1 Document suicide safety plan and follow up action according to evidence informed standards of care and relevant organisation requirements
4.2 Communicate relevant information to work colleagues and other people working with the person
4.3 Reflect on own role in providing support and use learning to enhance future practice
4.4 Identify and respond to the need for own supervision and debriefing

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course you will have developed the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate competency in the above elements

Overview of Assessment


Assessment 1 : completion of a response plan for a fictitious client

Assessment 2 : role plays of fictitious scenarios, completed in class