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Texas Suicide Lawyer Hails Suicide Prevention Efforts in Alaska


Attorney Skip Simpson, who represents families who have lost loved ones due to psychological and psychiatric malpractice, says much work needs to be done to improve the quality of care by mental health professionals.

Frisco, TX (PRWEB) October 26, 2012

Texas suicide lawyer Skip Simpson today said an effort in Alaska to support teen suicide prevention is an important step forward in a state that has an alarming number of people taking their own lives.

Simpson, an expert in suicide malpractice lawsuits, noted that Alaska had 23.1 suicides per 100,000 people in 2010, second only to Wyoming, which reported a suicide rate of 23.2. Alaska's rate is nearly double the national average of 12.4.

According to a Sept. 28 article in Delta News Web, the Alaska Community Foundation introduced a grant program to support teen suicide prevention. The Alaska Children's Trust and the ACF are accepting applications for the Teen Suicide Prevention Grant Program until Nov. 16, according to the ACF. The program is aimed at promoting physical, mental and spiritual wellness to prevent teen suicide in Alaska. Visit the ACF for more information.

In Alaska, the teen suicide rate is even higher than it is for the population as a whole, the Delta News Web article states. The suicide rate for young people between 15 and 19 is nearly 33 deaths per 100,000. The news site states that 8.5 percent of teenage students in Alaska reported attempting suicide between 2009 and 2010.

“These types of efforts can be helpful,” Simpson said. “Parents and teachers should know the warning signs of suicide and should monitor kids for severe mood swings, depression, anxiety or alcohol or drug abuse.”

Simpson added, “Teachers and parents with proper training can become gatekeepers capable of screening for potential risk and referring the student /loved one to a competent mental health clinician for proper care and management of the suicidal teen.”

The State of Alaska also is funding an initiate to strengthen the state's youth suicide prevention program. According to a news release from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, the $1.4 million Garrett Lee Smith Youth Suicide Prevention Grant, from the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, will help groups statewide offer suicide prevention training and develop prevention resources for their communities.

The grant will boost suicide prevention education efforts and also will pay for training of personnel to make referrals to those at risk. The grant will connect young people with community mental health systems and promote Alaska's suicide prevention line.

“Many people might not realize how poorly trained most mental health professionals are in the detection, assessment, management and treatment of suicidal people,” Simpson said. “Much work is needed to improve the quality of care for people at risk of suicide.”

Any family who has suffered the loss of a loved one due to a loved one who committed suicide in a hospital or a psychiatric facility should seek the help of an experienced suicide attorney by calling (214) 618-8222 or visiting

About The Law Offices of Skip Simpson
For over twenty years, Skip Simpson has been practicing law, focusing on psychiatric and psychological malpractice, suicide lawsuits, as well as personal injury civil, commercial and criminal litigation. Nationally recognized for his expertise in suicide law, he is considered a pioneer in the field of suicide litigation and has represented families who have lost loved ones to suicide around the country.

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