Background: Over the past two decades, governments have invested significantly in policies and strategies to prevent the tragic loss of life to suicide. However, there has been little focus on evaluating the implementation of such policies. Aims: This paper reports on the evaluation of the implementation of "Managing the Risk of Suicide: A Suicide Prevention Strategy for the ACT 2009-2014," the Australian Capital Territory's (ACT) suicide prevention strategy. We sought to answer two questions: (1) Could agencies provide data reporting on their progress in implementing the activities for which they were responsible?; and (2) Could a judgment about implementation progress be made and, if so, to what extent was the activity implemented? Method: Individually tailored electronic surveys were sent to 18 ACT agencies annually over 4 years to measure their progress in implementing activities for which they had responsibility. Results: By year four, full data were provided for 64% of activities, maximal partial data for 9%, and minimal partial data for 27%. Forty-two per cent of activities were fully implemented, 20% were partially implemented, and 38% were not implemented or could not be measured. Conclusion: It is possible to measure implementation of suicide prevention strategies, but appropriate processes and dedicated resources must be in place at the outset.
Sheehan, J., Griffiths, K., Rickwood, D., & Carron-Arthur, B. (2015). Evaluating the implementation of “managing the risk of suicide: A suicide prevention strategy for the ACT 2009-2014”: A whole-of-government/whole-of-community suicide prevention strategy. Crisis, 36(1), 4–12. https://doi.org/10.1027/0227-5910/a000295