Mental Health & Wellbeing: Announcing ASK


I think we all get touched by
compassion fatigue and suicide at some point. And it’s unfortunate that if
we haven’t yet, at some point we will. I always thought I was gonna be one of
those that didn’t nine years into my career and one of my classmates
decided to take her own life. It’s a scary thing, but it’s real;
I’ve experienced it; I thought about suicide every single day in the darkest
parts of my depression and without support from my family, I might have taken action. Probably the scariest things about the statistics that
one in ten veterinarians have suffered from significant psychological distress
and one in six have had suicidal ideation — it means that all of us have
somebody who’s next to us, who’s worked with us that is in that category
and sometimes you don’t know and that’s almost worse because
you’re not in a little bubble that doesn’t affect you. So Mars Veterinary Health has created a
suicide prevention training that’s specific for veterinary medicine and
it’s called ASK. ASK stands for Assess, Support, and Know. ASK is very specific and very welcoming and supportive and it makes everyone understand that we are
in it together and it’s not just one person’s problem that they need to go
seek help with. We have the responsibility to help our associates
and help everyone know that you go ASK, we’re here to help you and remove the
stigma. Everyone in our profession needs to know what resources exist for support. You never know when it might occur and these tools could truly save a life. We
all must link arms and get equipped to help one another out so that this issue
can be part of our history and not part of the future of the veterinary
profession.

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