Freeman News

Ozark Center Offers Online Suicide Prevention Training

September 08, 2021

Be Someone’s Lifeboat Event Shares How to Recognize Warning Signs of Suicide

Joplin, MO – September 5 – 11 is National Suicide Prevention Week, and September 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day. Anyone can become an advocate for suicide prevention, and Wednesday, Ozark Center held an online suicide prevention event themed Be Someone’s Lifeboat. The event included a memorial boat launch in remembrance of lives lost to suicide in the last year.

“No other type of death increases risk of suicide for survivors, impacts everyone universally, and is also the most preventable cause of death,” said Vicky Mieseler, Ozark Center Chief Administrative Officer. “Preventing suicide is everyone’s responsibility. Please join us in becoming an advocate for suicide prevention.  Education and awareness can eliminate suicide as a cause of death for any age group. Learning how to talk to someone and understanding the warning signs of suicide might prevent someone you love from dying by suicide.”

A person dies by suicide every 11.1 minutes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is in the top ten causes of deaths for adults and the second leading cause of death for 10- to 34-year-olds. The CDC reports suicide rates increased 33% between 1999 and 2019, with a small decline in 2019.

The event featured online Question, Persuade and Refer (QPR) Training, a 1-hour course that teaches individuals how to recognize the warning signs of suicide and how to apply steps that can save lives. Just as people trained in CPR and the Heimlich maneuver help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to identify someone considering self-harm and how to question, persuade and refer someone to help.




About Freeman Health System


Locally owned, not-for-profit and nationally recognized, Freeman Health System includes Freeman Hospital West, Freeman Hospital East, Freeman Neosho Hospital and Ozark Center – the area’s largest provider of behavioral health services – as well as two urgent care clinics, dozens of physician clinics and a variety of specialty services. In 2020, Freeman earned dozens of individual awards for medical excellence and patient safety from CareChex®, a quality rating system that helps consumers evaluate healthcare providers. U.S. News & World Report named Freeman Health System the Best Hospital in Southwest Missouri for 2020. With more than 320 physicians on staff representing more than 80 specialties, Freeman provides cancer care, heart care, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopaedics, children’s services and women’s services. Additionally, Freeman is the only Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in a 70-mile radius. For more information, visit




About Ozark Center


Ozark Center is based in Joplin, Missouri and has been an entity of Freeman Health System since 1996. It has been providing comprehensive behavioral health services to children, adults and families since 1965 in an area that includes more than 450,000 residents from the Four States. Ozark Center continually looks for innovative ways to address the behavioral health needs of the community and promote awareness of behavioral health issues in an effort to eliminate the discrimination associated with it. For more information, visit or call 417.347.7600.