Governor Brown Signs Bill to Help Psychologists Prevent Suicide

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On Friday, Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 89 authored by Assemblymember Levine, (D-Marin County. The bill requires applicants for licensure with the California Board of Psychology to complete a minimum of six hours of coursework on suicide prevention.

“AB 89 will require all psychologists demonstrate they have met a minimum threshold for suicide assessment and intervention coursework or training,” said Stephen C. Phillips, the President of the California Board of Psychology.  “As in many other regards, it is incumbent upon psychologists to lead the way in promoting the highest standards of care for Californians.”

Research shows one third of those who die by suicide had contact with a mental health professional provider in the year before their death. Assembly Bill 89 standardizes the minimum number of hours of suicide prevention training required for licensure in the State of California. This training can be completed through coursework, continuing education, or through applied experience.

“Suicide kills twice as many people in California as homicide, but not all mental healthcare providers have the training they need in suicide risk assessment and prevention,” said Assemblymember Levine. “AB 89 will save lives by making sure psychologists have the training they need to care for their patients.”

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