Suicide prevention approach presented to health experts

The University of Wolverhampton’s award-winning programme, Three Minutes to Save a Life, was pioneered by Senior Lecturer, Clare Dickens

Students and staff at the University of Wolverhampton have presented a “pioneering” suicide prevention project to a panel of health experts who are reviewing the wellbeing of NHS workers.

The report is currently being compiled by Sir Keith Pearson from Health Education England, and is due to be presented to the Secretary of State for Health in December.

Senior Lecturer in mental health nursing, Clare Dickens – who pioneered the University’s award-winning programme, Three Minutes to Save a Life – and two nursing students, were invited to present information about the project at a review of evidence earlier this month.

Three Minutes to Save a Life workshops are dedicated to tackling the issues of suicide, self-harming and emotional resilience. More than 800 students and staff – including security, caretaking and academics who have regular contact with students – have been trained to recognise early warning signs in at-risk students, and how they can escalate concerns proportionately and compassionately.

“Three Minutes to Save a Life workshops are dedicated to tackling the issues of suicide, self-harming and emotional resilience.”

Students on nursing and other health courses at Wolverhampton now receive the training as part of their curriculum, to improve their confidence and clinical skills, as well as showing due regard to their own wellbeing.

Jordan Bridges, a newly qualified mental health nurse from the University, said: “It was a privilege to represent the University at the panel and discuss how the Three Minutes to Save a Life training has helped me develop my career. As a newly qualified nurse, the training has enabled me take the knowledge out into practice and ensure that my colleagues, as well as patients, are looked after.”

Clare Dickens said: “What was most rewarding about the experience was to see two of our students flourish in an environment that no doubt provoked anxiety. They shared their experiences of studying nursing, the rewards and the challenges, as well as how they found their experience of receiving Three Minutes to Save a Life training as part of their curriculum.

“Sir Keith Pearson concluded the questioning in commenting that, if this is the standard of professionals who we are leaving our NHS to, he is assured it is in safe hands.”