An Ideal Model for Suicide Prevention Programs in the Fire Service: Evaluating the Suicide Prevention Programs of Texas Commission on Fire Protection Certified Special District Fire Departments in Hays County, TX
MetadataShow full metadata
The fire service is facing a crisis of firefighter suicides. The rate of firefighter suicides and suicidal ideation is on the rise. Current programs are lacking in a holistic approach to suicide prevention. This study aimed to use available literature to develop a preliminary suicide prevention framework, to assess Hays County Emergency Services District’s (HCESD’s) fire departments using the framework, and finally, to use those assessments to make recommendations to establish and/or improve suicide prevention programs in HCESD’s fire departments. To create the framework an extensive literature review was conducted of existing programs. Once the framework was established the five ESD fire departments within Hays County were contacted with a request for documentation. Using document analysis and coding sheets, each fire department was evaluated for presence and quality of the individual suicide prevention program for each department. The analysis showed that these fire departments are unprepared for the rising suicide rate epidemic. Based on these findings, further research is suggested and cooperation of fire departments within HCESDs is recommended to create a more robust program.