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Suicide Prevention Research Impact NeTwork (SPRINT)

The overall goal of this CORE is to accelerate suicide prevention research that will lead to improvements in care, and that will ultimately result in reductions in suicide behaviors among Veterans. SPRINT’s Principal Investigators are: Steven Dobscha, MD, Director, HSR&D’s Center to Improve Veteran Involvement in Care (CIVIC); Mark Ilgen, PhD, Research Career Scientist, HSR&D’s Center for Clinical Management (CCMR); and Teresa Hudson, PhD, PharmD, Associate Director of HSR&D’s Center for Mental Healthcare & Outcomes Research (CeMHOR).

Steven Dobscha, MD

Steven Dobscha, MD

Mark Ilgen, PhD

Mark Ilgen, PhD

Teresa Hudson, PhD, PharmD

Teresa Hudson, PhD, PharmD

National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

September is an important time to shed light on the toll that suicide takes—particularly on our nation's Veterans. Preventing suicide is one of VA's highest priorities, and research that builds evidence-based suicide prevention policy and clinical practice is critical. Suicide is a national public health concern that affects all Americans. VA believes that everyone has a role to play in preventing suicide. HSR&D Suicide Prevention Monthly Feature: www.hsrd.research.va.gov/news/feature/sprint.cfm.

SPRINT Mission

To accelerate VA suicide prevention (SP) research that will improve care and reduce suicidal thoughts and behaviors among Veterans.

SPRINT’s Goals:

  • Serve as an inclusive and collaborative network of VHA and non-VHA researchers and SP Centers of Excellence dedicated to conducting high-quality, high-priority, and high impact SP research.
  • Maintain a “state of the science” inventory of information about VHA and non-VHA health services SP research activities, VHA operations-funded SP projects, and the evidence-base for SP interventions.
  • In collaboration with stakeholders including operations partners, use the inventory to create a focused SP research agenda; and facilitate development of team-science efforts to address the agenda.
  • Support innovation and development of methodological and content expertise, and high impact projects that create, test and implement potential solutions.

Partners include:

  • Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
  • Serious Mental Illness Treatment Resource and Evaluation Center (SMITREC)
  • VISN-2 Center of Excellence in Suicide Prevention
  • Rocky Mountain MIRECC
  • Behavioral-Health QUERI
  • VA Evidence Synthesis Program



HSR&D Suicide Prevention Research Impact NeTwork (SPRINT) and Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention hosted a Virtual Conference July 9-10, 2020.

Suicide Prevention Research in VA: Developing a Continuum of Intervention and Moving Us Forward

DAY 1 presentation slides: Suicide Prevention Research in VA: Developing a Continuum of Intervention

  • Review current state of evidence, operations and research priorities, and active suicide prevention projects, with a focus on intervention research spanning a continuum from clinical care to community.
  • Highlight and discuss several ongoing research projects along this
  • Review prior research on mental health impacts (including suicidal self-directed violence) of pandemics and other national crises and introduce several COVID-19 projects in

DAY 2 presentation slides: Suicide Prevention Research in VA: Moving Us Forward (a working meeting)

  • Discuss and problem-solve around barriers and facilitators to conducting suicide prevention research including in the context of COVID-19
  • Promote new and enhance existing collaborations among researchers and operations leads to facilitate development of new suicide prevention research along the
  • Convene breakout groups to examine what the critical barriers (and potential solutions) are to doing research in the following 5 research topics: Lethal Means safety; Risk/Screening and assessment; Community & Engagement; Other interventions; and Implementation research in suicide prevention. The breakout summary can be downloaded here.

Download conference brochure.




Results from HSR&D Needs Assessment

In 2019, the SPRINT Core team solicited feedback from current and aspiring suicide prevention HSR&D researchers. The needs assessment included questions about areas of interest and expertise, and gathered input we hope will support communication, networking, and development of new collaborations. Here we provide a summary of the results from the needs assessment.




Summary of Suicide Prevention Data Review Meeting

On September 5, 2019, SPRINT convened a working meeting in Portland to synthesize an initial SPRINT research agenda and develop a set of initial project ideas to be supported by SPRINT via communications to stakeholders, pilot funding, and infrastructure. Attendees included the SPRINT Core investigator group and representatives from across ORD, DoD, NIH, the Military Suicide Research Consortium, and the VHA Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention. An Executive Summary of this meeting is provided here and a Compendium of Systematic Reviews of Suicide Prevention Topics prepared by VA's Evidence Synthesis Program in partnership with CIVIC for the meeting, located here. Topics identified from this meeting as a high priority for SPRINT to facilitate in FY2020 are located here.

For more information, or to join our listserv, email SuicidePreventionRes@va.gov.


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Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.