People always seem to have something to talk about – whether communicated verbally, electronically, using sign language or pen and paper. The communication can be callous or empathetic. Judgmental or understanding. Clear or convoluted. Boring or interesting.
There are conversations on safe, non-controversial topics, like the weather. And conversations about the good and not so good experiences of the day. Or discussions on what to have for dinner, politics, movies or the occasional venting about something or someone. One topic that people do not like to discuss is death – especially their death or that of a loved one.
Adult children often avoid discussing death with their aged parents and likewise parents are not keen on having this conversation with their children. Many find conversations about death with family or friends diagnosed with a terminal illness extremely challenging. Others are uncomfortable talking about death after a loved one has passed. This is especially true in the case of a death by suicide.
September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and tomorrow is World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD). These are perfect times to raise awareness of this all too frequently taboo topic as well warning signs and available resources. Suicidal thoughts and acting on those thoughts can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, or background. The construction industry has one of the highest rates of suicides among all occupations — four times higher than the general population according to a 2020 study by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Suicide is a national health problem and currently ranks as the second leading cause of death for ages 10-45.
If you are experiencing mental health-related distress or are worried about a loved one who may need crisis support, call, or text 988 to be connected to trained counselors at the Lifeline network. You may also chat at 988lifeline.org. Lifeline is confidential, free and available 24/7/365. Learn more about suicide risk factors, warning signs, and prevention at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
This Weekend Reading Series begins with This Just In with some of the latest healthcare policy and industry news. Next check out Saving Lives exploring the difficult subject of suicide. Do not miss Bad Actors, with examples of physician malpractice flying under the radar, the impact of cyber hacks on hospital patient care, and more! Last but not least, check out Oddly Enough, and my personal favorite – Nebraska Man Makes World’s Longest Journey by Pumpkin Boat !
I hope you enjoy the following:
1. This Just In
- Judge invalidates parts of the ACA that mandate health coverage of many preventive services and drugs (STAT News)
- EXPLAINER: Is COVID-19 winding down? Scientists say no. (Associated Press)
- Patient Satisfaction Surveys Earn a Zero on Tracking Whether Hospitals Deliver Culturally Competent Care (Kaiser Health News)
- Bronchodilators don’t improve smoking-related respiratory symptoms in people without COPD (University of MI)
2. Saving Lives
- Long COVID’s link to suicide: scientists warn of hidden crisis (Reuters)
- A suicidal son, an iconic bridge and the struggle to keep people from jumping (Washington Post)
- Employers, Labor Leaders Join State Officials to Raise Awareness, Action Around Suicide Prevention in Construction Industry (Michigan.gov)
- With homicide the leading cause of maternal mortality, new research shows a link to firearms and intimate partner violence (STAT)
- Facing Suicide: Let’s Talk (PBS)
3. Bad Actors
- Michigan cancer doctor accused of performing unnecessary radical hysterectomies (WXYZ)
- Celebrated New England surgeon Yvon Baribeau has one of the worst malpractice records in country, Globe investigation finds (MassLive)
- Healthcare cyberattacks led to worse patient care, increased mortality, study finds (HealthCare Dive)
- The idea of a ‘surgeon’s personality’ won’t fix the profession (Psyche)
4. Oddly Enough
- Nebraska Man Makes World’s Longest Journey by Pumpkin Boat (Smithsonian Magazine)
- The Death of Pennsylvania’s Forgotten Funeral Pie (Atlas Obscura)
- I spied on my cat with a GPS tracker The ups and downs of feline surveillance (Experience)
- Remembering When America Banned Sliced Bread (Atlas Obscura)
Enjoy the weekend!
Suzanne Daniels, Ph.D.
P.O. Box 1416
Birmingham, MI 48012
Office: (248) 792-2187
Email: [email protected]