Trainings Offered

Trainings Offered

Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR)


The QPR mission is to save lives and reduce suicidal behaviors by providing innovative, practical and proven suicide prevention training. We believe that quality education empowers all people, regardless of their background, to make a positive difference in the life of someone they know.

What is the QPR Institute?

The QPR Institute has developed a comprehensive series of both professional and lay training programs to help prevent suicide. These programs cover the spectrum of awareness raising and primary prevention, to intervention and suicide risk assessment, as well as training in postvention in the aftermath of suicide and other trauma. Ours is a systems approach and based on the premise that everyone needs suicide prevention training. We are helping others all across the USA and beyond to implement public health oriented suicide prevention programs in their schools, universities, hospitals and communities. We currently have more than 1,000 Certified QPR Instructors in more than 36 states, Australia and China.

For the professional, we have written, researched and field-tested award-winning suicide risk assessment tools and methodologies to be used in health care organizations. These tools and protocols have received positive evaluations both by the professionals who use them, as well as by the suicidal people who experience the risk assessment evaluation. The QPR Institute Suicide Risk Reduction Program has recently been profiled as an example of “best practices” by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations in their 1999 publications, Preventing Adverse Events in Behavioral Health Care and Preventing Patient Suicide.

We are now reaching out to professional and healthcare organizations, as well as training institutions who prepare clinical providers, to better prepare all of us to help suicidal people not only survive their current crisis, but to benefit from the treatment that we all know saves lives.

For professionals treating suicidal people we offer a variety of training opportunities and materials (including self-study courses) to improve suicide risk detection, assessment and management skills. We offer suicide risk management inventories and protocols available for those working with adults of all ages, those working with children and adolescents and those treating suicidal people in inpatient and residential settings. We also offer training programs for those who work with survivors of suicide and other trauma.

QPR Institute
P.O. Box 2867
Spokane, WA 99220
(888) 726-7926
(509) 536-5100
(509) 536-5400 (fax)

*QPR trainings can be tailored to specific populations, groups, or communities. For example, TSPN offers an Alcohol & Drug QPR with a heavy emphasis on the correlation between substance use and suicide, as well as an LGBTQ QPR training with statistics and resources specific to the LGTBQ community. If you are interested in tailoring a QPR to your organization’s needs, please email

qpr triage

A participant must have completed previous QPR training to participate in a QPR Triage training. This course teaches you how to detect and interview people in crisis, how to determine if they are suicidal, and how to assess the immediate risk of suicide, as well as how to immediately reduce the risk of a suicide attempt through a safety planning and referral process.

Applied suicide intervention skills training (asist)

Livingworks Logo

Suicide affects us all. It’s an international problem. For example, more than 3,500 Canadians and 30,000 Americans kill themselves each year. Research studies in Canada and the United States show four to five percent of the population has attempted suicide during their lifetime. Other statistics are just as disturbing: one in nine has seriously considered suicide; and persons bereaved by suicide are eight times more likely to die by suicide.

No one is protected. Men and women of all ages, of all occupations and all socioeconomic groups are at risk. There is no guarantee of safety from suicide. The key to suicide prevention is trained caregivers who are ready, willing and able to get involved with each individual at risk – caregivers who can recognize individuals who are at risk and who know how to intervene to prevent the risk of suicidal thoughts becoming suicidal behaviors.

What Are the Costs?

How do you put financial value on the loss of a life? One economic study in the United States showed each youth suicide resulted in an average loss of 53 years of life and $432,000 of economic productivity. That total adds up to a staggering 202,000 lost years and $3.19 billion in lost productivity each year. In Canada, 12% of hospital critical-care and 2% of insurance pay-outs are suicide-related. But the economic and health costs pale alongside the emotional costs of suicide. A lost spouse, son, daughter, friend or co-worker can’t be replaced. And, as those who have experienced such loss understand, it is the emotional costs which demand our involvement in preventing suicide.

Something Can Be Done

The vast majority of those planning suicide will find some way to signal their intent. Most suicidal people are looking for another option. They don’t want to die. But preventing suicide takes two people: a helper and the person at risk.

Government reports in Canada, the United States, United Kingdom and Finland, by the European World Health Organization and the United Nations emphasize that caregiver competence is a critical component in any large scale suicide prevention program.

ASIST Helps Prepare Caregivers

ASIST is designed to help all caregivers become more comfortable, competent and confident when dealing with persons at risk. Suicide can be prevented through the actions of prepared caregivers.

Just as CPR skills make physical first aid possible, training in suicide intervention develops the skills used in suicide first aid. ASIST is a two-day intensive, interactive and practice-dominated course designed to help caregivers recognize and estimate risk, and learn how to intervene to prevent the immediate risk of suicide.

The workshop is for all caregivers (any person in a position of trust). This includes professionals, paraprofessionals and lay people. It is suitable for mental health professionals, nurses, physicians, teachers, counselors, youth workers, police and correctional staff, school support staff, clergy, and community volunteers.

The LivingWorks Program is a comprehensive, coordinated and integrated approach to suicide prevention which involves the entire community. Living Works creates learning experiences that help communities prevent suicide and assist life. We are a public service corporation dedicated to enhancing resources today and saving lives for tomorrow. Our programs are cost-effective and easy-to-learn, with practical applications for all concerned community members.


safeTALK is another training under the LivingWorks umbrella. In this training, participants learn how to prevent suicide by recognizing signs, engaging someone, and connecting them to an intervention resource for further support. This training is similar to QPR but longer and a bit more in-depth. safeTALK is not necessary to complete before ASIST, but it is recommended that those interested in completing an ASIST training first complete a safeTALK training.

Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS)

Cssrs Logo

The Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) is rapidly becoming the national and global standard in suicide risk assessment, proving more effective than other screening mechanisms previously introduced. C-SSRS is the only screening tool that assesses the full range of evidence-based ideation and behavior items, with criteria for next steps (e.g. referral to mental health professionals); thus, the C-SSRS can be exceptionally useful in initial screenings. Additionally, no formal mental health training is required to administer it.

Since its debut in 2007, C-SSRS has been endorsed by the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention and its definitions of suicidal ideation have been formally adopted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It has been requested or recommended by a host of federal and international agencies including the Food and Drug Administration, the World Health Organization, the Joint Commission, and the American Medical Association.

The C-SSRS scale and training instructions, along with additional information about its methodology and effectiveness, is available at here.

adverse childhood experiences (ACES) training


This training consists of the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth’s Building Strong Brains curriculum with added suicide prevention content. This training describes how early childhood trauma affects brain development and increases a person’s risk of suicide later in life.


Youth Mental Health First Aid Logo Orig

Youth Mental Health First Aid is a training under the Mental Health First Aid USA umbrella, managed by the National Council for Behavioral Health. This training is designed to teach parents, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to helped an adolescent (ages 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis. YMHFA is primarily designed for adults who regularly interact with young people. The course introduces common mental health challenges for youth, reviews typical adolescent development, and teaches a 5-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations.