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ETSU to host conference, community forum addressing teen suicide prevention

From Staff Reports

East Tennessee State University’s Department of Pediatrics in the Quillen College of Medicine will host a special conference and community forum later this month addressing teen suicide prevention.

The events will take place in Votaw Auditorium, located in the ETSU Quillen Physicians building at 325 N. State of Franklin Road, on Monday, Oct. 31.

From noon to 1 p.m., a pediatric conference for health care professionals called “Youth Suicide and Its Prevention” will take place. It will be followed by a community forum from 1-2 p.m. in which key stakeholders will discuss what can be done to reduce teen suicide attempts in Northeast Tennessee.

Dr. Hatim Omar, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Kentucky, will be the keynote speaker at the conference and among the panelists at the forum.

Omar is an adolescent specialist and has built a large clinical program in adolescent health in Kentucky. He is an expert in teen suicide prevention and has published numerous articles and edited a book on the topic. His advocacy resulted in the Kentucky legislature passing mandatory suicide prevention education in all middle schools and high schools in the state. He started the STOP Youth Suicide Campaign in rural Kentucky in 2000 and the program has resulted in a 40-percent decrease in hospitalizations for suicide attempts in Lincoln County, Kentucky.

The noon conference is open to physicians, advanced practice nurses, physician assistants, psychologists and other health care professionals and students. Physician education credits are being offered for attending.

The community forum is open to the public.

For more information, call 439-6222.