Innovation Research Grants

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP, Minister for Health, on 15 June 2019 announced the four successful recipients of the first round Innovation Research Grants under the Suicide Prevention Research Fund.

The Suicide Prevention Research Fund was created by the Federal Government in 2017 and allocated $12 million over three years to support research into suicide prevention.

Suicide Prevention Australia is proud to manage the Suicide Prevention Research Fund on behalf of the Federal Government and guided by the Research Advisory Committee under the Chair of Professor Don Nutbeam and includes leading experts from the lived experience community, researchers and service providers.

The four researchers awarded an Innovation Research Grant are:

Dr Wei Du

Dr Wei Du, Australian National University

Project: Hospital to Community Supports to Prevent Suicide Re-Attempts

Receiving the research grant is so important for me because our project will generate strong evidence and practical recommendations for acute and community healthcare providers, mental health practitioners, youth experience self-harm, and their caregivers to make informed decisions with respect to personalised care path selections. Above all, it will benefit youth experiencing self-harm, for which their healthcare journeys will be optimised to reach their full potential.

Professor Francis Kay-Lambkin

Professor Francis Kay-Lambkin, University of Newcastle

Project: SHADE and BreathingSpace – Alcohol, Depression and Social Isolation

Receiving this research grant is critically important, because it gives my team an opportunity to take our successful treatments for depression and alcohol use into a brand new group of Australians. For the first time, we will be able to see how Australians over 60 years of age like, engage with, and benefit from a technology-based treatment program. We will also be able to see how well a social networking intervention, also delivered by an app, can to reduce social isolation and increase social connections… and whether all of this helps to reduce and prevent suicide. This grant also provides us the opportunity to engage closely with people who are experiencing depression, alcohol use problems, and social isolation into the design and delivery of our programs. We are very excited about the inroads into suicide prevention we will be able to make with this grant.

Dr Mark Larsen

Dr Mark Larsen, University of New South Wales

Project: Behavioural patterns at Suicide Hot Spots

This research grant is important as we currently know very little about clusters of suicidal behaviour. Working with community partners in this project will help us identify and reach out to people in crisis at specific locations, hopefully leading to earlier intervention and saving lives.

Dr Miriam Posselt, University of South Australia

Project: Suicide Prevention Tools for Use With Asylum Seekers and Refugees

Receiving the research grant is so important because we are concerned about suicidal ideation and behaviour among refugees and asylum seekers in Australia and because there is a lack of research looking at how best to respond when refugees and asylum seekers are experiencing suicidal distress. This grant will enable us to increase our knowledge and understanding of suicidal distress for this group.

Our research will involve working alongside community members, service providers and individuals who have lived expertise of suicide, to co-create, implement and evaluate a culturally appropriate suicide prevention intervention that will also be translated into key languages, named the Refugee and Asylum Seeker Safety Planning Intervention (RASSPI).