SafeSide Primary CARE: Acute assessment and management of suicidality in primary care

This is a fast-paced, online interactive workshop led by suicide prevention expert, Dr. Tony Pisani, and lived experience instructor, Kristina Mossgraber.

29 August 2020

Delivered via ZOOM

8:30am – 11:45am NZST

More than just safe care, it is hope for a full recovery and a life that’s liveable again.

Suicide concerns can come up any time in primary care–on routine screening, in the context of depression treatment, or because a parent or spouse is worried.

Regulatory requirements to assess and address risk are also increasing, adding to the list of responsibilities (and opportunities) to promote health.

Most providers are eager to help and want to relieve suffering, but training specific to primary care is hard to come by and there's uncertainty about what defines a solid response to risk. With something this important, somebody should make it clear.

SafeSide provides a clear framework for suicide prevention in primary care. It's never easy, but now you have map.

This 3-hour workshop is presented by SafeSide Prevention. SafeSide is a framework for recovery-oriented suicide prevention that lifts our sights beyond merely ‘keeping clients safe’ toward a vision of evidence-based care that is truly connected with a client’s needs, experiences, and growth potential.

SafeSide is an evidence-based workshop that addresses common dilemmas, demands, and rewards of supporting individuals at risk for suicide. With a focus on a prevention-oriented risk formulation that helps reduce your risk of complaints, and helps improve patient outcomes.

The interactive SafeSide workshop is co-led by its founder Dr. Anthony Pisani, internationally recognised leader in suicide prevention education and workforce development, and Kristina Mossgraber, patient advocate and lived experience consultant.

SafeSide Primary CARE Learning Objectives


You know how to connect with your patients. When suicidal thoughts come up, it’s easy to lose that connection in an effort to assess the risk. Learn to:

  • Ask directly and clearly about suicide without losing your connection with a patient.
  • Plan for safety and motivate patients toward the goal of feeling better.
  • Express your commitment to stick with the patient while also involving other resources.


Gather and summarize information that’s actionable, not just about “risk.”

  • Use a consistent structure for gathering and communicating information.
  • Base plans and decisions on the function of suicidal thoughts, the available resources, and the specific changes that could make things worse.


You’ve connected, you’ve assessed. Then what? SafeSide shows you four basic categories of effective and legally defensive actions:

  • Use a set of evidence-based “one-liners” we call mini-interventions.
  • Make initial plans for how the patient and others will respond to foreseeable changes that might increase risk.
  • Increase contact and involve crisis care when indicated.
  • Make relevant referrals and consultations for unmet needs.


You and your practice can extend the impact of initial responses into the patient’s life.

  • Establish clear roles for family and other supports.
  • Employ the suicide-related warm-handoff, whether you have co-located or off-site behavioural health.

Who Should Attend

This workshop is for GP's, clinicians who work in primary care, nurses and training managers in health, behavioural health, and youth services settings, community organisations, doctors surgeries and hauora centers.

Our thanks to the Goodfellow Unit for their support with this training.

This SafeSide Suicide Prevention workshop is worth 10 points / 3 hours CPD

Workshop Presenters

SafeSide is led by Dr. Tony Pisani and Kristina Mossgraber.

Tony Pisani

Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics

Tony is an international leader in suicide prevention education. He is on the faculty of University of Rochester–Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide. Dr Pisani has published numerous academic papers and served on national workgroups including the Workforce Preparedness Taskforce of the National Action Alliance, which authored the current US Suicide Prevention Strategy.

Kristina Mossgraber

Patient advocate

Kristina is an advocate for recovery-oriented behavioural health care. A suicide attempt survivor, Kristina devotes herself to improving care for others who suffer as she did. She is Director of Education & Community Outreach for the Rochester chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI) and provides lived experience expertise to all programs provided by SafeSide Prevention.

What is SafeSide?

SafeSide is an evidence-informed approach to caring interaction, assessment and support for youth and adults at risk for suicide. 

The framework provides a common language and simple, practical steps so everyone is ready and clear-minded when patients disclose suicidal thinking.

Four core tasks incorporate best practices for supporting people at risk for suicide—no matter what your setting or role: Connect, Assess, Respond, and Extend.

The Care Framework also applies “fluid vulnerability theory” by focusing attention on identifying a person’s available resources and foreseeable changes—triggers that could increase risk—and how to plan for these.

The innovation at the heart of the Care Framework is a risk formulation model developed by SafeSide founder Anthony R. Pisani, Ph.D. and colleagues Daniel Murrie, Ph.D. and Morton M. Silverman, M.D. The Care Framework expands on the Commitment to Living (CTL) curriculum developed by Dr. Pisani.

For video-based suicide prevention training with ongoing expert interaction, please visit the Safeside website:

Price & Registration

Zoom Meeting Date & Time

Saturday, 29 August 2020

8.30 am – 11.45 am NZST

$150.00 + GST

This event will be delivered Online, and once you have registered you will receive the Zoom login information.

Registration process

Payment online is by Debit or Credit Card: VISA, Mastercard or American Express only and there are 3 easy steps to complete the online booking process.

Our registration platform is hosted by Lil Regie, our NZ based booking agent. Upon completing your registration by hitting the blue 'Confirm Booking' button, you will receive an automated email confirming the booking and amount paid by credit card. A GST Tax Invoice showing your payment in full will also be emailed to you.

If you have any issues or questions about your booking, please contact Faye Johnson on 027 607 3000 or email:

We work hard to ensure that all workshops are cost effective by automating our systems. If you require an invoice (rather than paying by debit or credit card) there will be a $20.00 + GST surcharge for this, and you will need to supply:

  • The full name and postal address required to appear on the invoice.
  • The contact name and email of the person(s) responsible for authorising this expense and approving payment.
  • Any purchase order references required on vendor invoices.

Please email  if you would like to reserve a place, as our workshops fill quickly.

What happens if you have to cancel?

Refunds are not available unless GROW cancels the workshop ahead of time. Training is cancellable by GROW with 3 days’ notice if a minimum number of attendees is not met.

Please note: GROW Ltd reserves the right to make any amendments that we may deem to be in the best interest of the forum – it is however very unlikely and we will notify you as soon as possible should this occur.

For more information see our full Terms of Trade.

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For further details, please contact:
Faye Johnson at or call 027 607 3000