LifeSpan has been developed by the Black Dog Institute in partnership with clinicians, researchers, community groups and people with lived experience of suicide.
Suicide is the leading cause of death for Australians aged 15-44 years.
In 2016, there were 2,866 deaths by suicide in Australia. The suicide rate has increased across the past decade from 10.6 per 100,000 in 2007 to 11.7 per 100,000 in 2016.
For every suicide death, as many as 25 individuals will attempt suicide.
Based on this estimate, approximately 71,600 people in Australia will attempt suicide in any given year.
LifeSpan is an innovative, world-class approach to suicide prevention and is the new name for the Systems Approach to Suicide Prevention initially developed on behalf of the NSW Mental Health Commission by the NHMRC Centre for Research Excellence in Suicide Prevention (CRESP) and Black Dog Institute. Development involved extensive collaboration and input from partners across the sector and lived experience representatives.
In December 2015, Black Dog Institute received an independent philanthropic grant from the Paul Ramsay Foundation to deliver LifeSpan in four sites in NSW and scientifically assess the impact of LifeSpan.
Representing a prevention focus, LifeSpan's ultimate goal is suicide prevention and supporting people to live full, contributing lives.
Based on the most up-to-date evidence available and drawing from positive results of similar, large-scale suicide prevention programs overseas, this integrated systems approach is predicted to prevent 21% of suicide deaths and 30% of suicide attempts.