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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: April 9, 2021 10:25 AM
From: Representative Michael H. Schlossberg
To: All House members
Subject: Authorizing Localized Suicide Death Review Teams
Pennsylvania, like many other states, has seen a rise in deaths by suicide across all ages and demographics. The factors that contribute to suicide and suicidal behavior are complex and diverse, but are not always identified due to a lack of detailed and timely data. In response to this issue, Governor Wolf ordered the establishment of a statewide Suicide Death Review team in 2019 to conduct multidisciplinary reviews of suicides and make recommendations to prevent future suicide deaths in Pennsylvania. 

Understanding the circumstances and events preceding a suicide is essential to identifying the risk factors, as well as missed opportunities within our mental health systems for prevention and intervention. However, this is no small task and will require collaboration and coordination between the state and local communities. Therefore, I will be introducing legislation to allow local communities and agencies across Pennsylvania to establish suicide death review teams. Comprised of representatives from various public safety, public health, and social service agencies, localized review teams can provide a more focused investigation of deaths due to suicide in order to develop targeted interventions and prevention strategies.

Please join me in supporting this legislation to advance the efforts of the Commonwealth’s suicide prevention strategy and strengthen our communities’ ability to understand the unique needs of their residents.

Introduced as HB1309