Support after a suicide attempt

The Way Back Support Service

The Way Back Support Service is delivered to people who have been admitted to a hospital following a suicide attempt or people experiencing a suicide crisis.

Partnering hospitals assess and refer people to The Way Back Support Coordinators who then contact the person within 24 hours and work with them to develop a safety plan. 

Encouraging results in trial sites led to an Australian Government Budget announcement of $37.6 million for Beyond Blue to roll out The Way Back to up to 25 sites across the country, beginning July 2018.

Current sites

Northern Territory

Darwin

The NT has the highest suicide rate of any Australian state or territory by a significant margin.

An initial trial of The Way Back, funded by the Movember Foundation, was launched in Darwin in June 2014 and was delivered locally, with oversight from Beyond Blue. An independent evaluation was conducted by Ernst & Young.

A second iteration of the service ran in 2016/2017, with a third phase expected to commence in 2018 with funding from NT Health.

New South Wales

Newcastle (Hunter Primary Care)

The second and most significant trial of The Way Back Support Service commenced in the Hunter region of NSW from May 2016, funded by the Movember Foundation and Beyond Blue.

NSW consistently has the greatest number of suicide deaths per annum. There are nearly 2,400 suicide attempts in the Hunter region each year and The Way Back provides a critical service to reduce the risk of these people dying by suicide. The Way Back is delivered by a Newcastle-based consortium, which includes: 

  • Hunter Primary Care (lead agency)
  • Calvary Mater Newcastle Hospital
  • Hunter New England Local Health District Mental Health Services
  • Everymind
  • Relationships Australia 
 

Guiding Their Way Back Support Groups (EveryMind)

The Guiding Their Way Back Support Groups were developed by Everymind with funding from Beyond Blue, The nib Foundation and The Greater Charitable Foundation. This program has been developed for the community, including partners, parents, siblings or other family members, friends and colleagues of people who have recently attempted suicide.

Relationships Australia has partnered with Everymind and Beyond Blue to deliver the pilot information session and group program in October 2016.

Murrumbidgee (Wellways)

The Murrumbidgee PHN have funded Wellways to deliver The Way Back throughout the Murrumbidgee region. Launching in January 2018, this service will operate in Wagga Wagga, Griffith, Young and Deniliquin. Referrals are received through the Murrumbidgee Local Health District.

North Coast

The North Coast site was developed by Beyond Blue in partnership with New Horizons and Roses in the Ocean, with funding from the North Coast Primary Health Network. It launched in November 2018 and receives referrals from the Tweed Hospital and Lismore Hospital.

Australian Capital Territory

Canberra (Woden Community Service)

ACT Health and Beyond Blue are funding the implementation of a site in Canberra for two years from 2016. Beyond Blue has appointed Woden Community Service as the local service provider, with client intake starting in October 2016 with referrals from both Canberra and Calvary Public Hospital Bruce.

The Canberra site is also trialling an after-hours service to clients of The Way Back, for potential expansion to other sites if successful.

Queensland

Redcliffe (Richmond Fellowship of Queensland)

The Redcliffe site is funded by the Brisbane North PHN and provided by the Richmond Fellowship of Queensland. This service launched in October 2017 and is receiving referrals from the Redcliffe Hospital.

Victoria

Geelong (Barwon, Child, Youth and Families)

Funded by Barwon Health as part of the Victorian Government’s HOPE Initiatives, this service launched in December 2017 and is delivered by Barwon, Child, Youth and Families. Referrals are received from Barwon Hospital.

South East Melbourne

Funded by the South East Melbourne Primary Health Network, this service is due to commence by June 2018.
The Way Back information resources

Beyond Blue and the Hunter Institute of Mental Health have developed the resources below for people who have attempted suicide and their close family and friends.

Finding your way back

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If you have attempted suicide

Getting your life back on track after attempting suicide is not easy. It takes time to recover physically and emotionally. Things might feel out of control and you might find yourself asking, what now?

Finding your way back has been written to help you begin to answer important questions about your future wellbeing.

Download the Finding your way back booklet


Guiding their way back

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If you are supporting someone who has attempted suicide

Having someone you care about attempt suicide can be incredibly traumatic. You might respond with anger, fear or sadness.

Guiding their way back provides practical information about the impact a suicide can have. It talks about why people attempt suicide, how they might be feeling and, importantly, what you can do to provide support.

Download the Guiding their way back booklet


Finding our way back

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A resource specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people after a suicide attempt

Finding our way back was developed with major input from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their family and friends. It’s a starting point for working through some of the questions that can come up after a suicide attempt.

Download the Finding our way back booklet

1. To find the reference for the research and statistics on this page, please visit the references page and search through the suicide category.

Crisis support

If you are in an emergency, or at immediate risk of harm to yourself or others, please contact emergency services on 000. Other services include:

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