On International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day, Remind Survivors of Available Resources

International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day, Saturday, November 23, is an occasion for survivors to join together for healing and support through their shared experience. Originally designated in 1999, the weekend before Thanksgiving is always recognized as Survivor Day since the holidays can be a difficult time of remembrance for those who have lost loved ones to suicide. 

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) coordinates over 300 events in the United States and worldwide, recognizing that this issue affects people from all walks of life. This year two events will be held in Arizona–in Tempe and Sierra Vista. While each event is different, all will feature a short AFSP documentary that shows families navigating the loss of a parent, child, sibling, or friend, in all different stages of grief. Regardless of one’s place in healing, Survivor Day aims to connect people to a network of communities that understand grief through shared experiences.

This year’s documentary is titled Pathways to Healing: Hope after Suicide Loss, and follows a community’s healing journey following the loss of a son, brother, and friend: Chris Taddeo. Watch the trailer here

On Survivor Day, take time to recognize your own strength and the strength of those around you. Recognize those that have been in ultimate despair and managed to carry on; recognize those that are finding their own path to their new normal. If you need help, seek it. If you want to talk about your loss, talk about it freely. 

Register to attend an event or see past documentaries

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You Can Help Stop Medicaid Fraud, Waste, and Abuse

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) investigates reports of suspected fraud, waste, and abuse of AHCCCS programs. Each year, OIG recovers and saves tens of millions of dollars in fraudulent claims from members and providers against Medicaid.

In SFY19, OIG recovered and saved more than $52.6M.

The primary way AHCCCS discovers fraud is through referrals from people like you. 

What does fraud look like?

Fraud is when someone lies or gives false information with the intent to receive benefits or payments for which they are not legally eligible. Members and Providers commit fraud in a variety of ways; here are just a few:  

Members

  • Provide incorrect household composition information
  • Falsify income or fail to report income 
  • Hide employment or self-employment information
  • Falsify Arizona or US residency status

Providers

  • Make false statements and false claims
  • Billing for services and supplies not provided
  • Double billing, over billing, and incorrect coding
  • Committing prescription and pharmacy fraud

If you suspect Medicaid fraud, don’t hesitate to report it. Anyone can anonymously report fraud, waste, or abuse. OIG depends on people like you–employees, members, providers and the general public to provide these referrals for investigation. 

To report possible Medicaid fraud, visit azahcccs.gov/ReportFraud

You may also submit attachments and/or additional information by email to AHCCCSFraud@azahcccs.gov.

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Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Suicide is a major health issue that affects people of all ages, incomes, and ethnicity. Despite suicide being preventable, it is the second leading cause of death nationally in individuals ages 10 to 34, and the 4th leading cause of death those between the ages 35 – 54. Throughout this month, AHCCCS, in partnership with suicide prevention organizations, will be drawing attention to the prevalence of this issue and advocating for the importance of mental health.

This September, the State Suicide Prevention Specialist at AHCCCS is promoting suicide prevention awareness and education events across the state, and working with state agencies and other partners to advance education and awareness efforts.

September 3, 6:30 p.m.: AHCCCS staff presents to Moms Demand at Dayspring United Methodist Church.

September 14, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.: City of Mesa Police and other community advocates are hosting a suicide prevention resource fair at the Red Mountain Multi-generational Center.

September 14, 8 a.m.: 3rd Annual #YouMatter Suicide Awareness and Prevention Walk with the Havasu Community Health Foundation at Rotary Park, 1400 S Smoketree Ave, Lake Havasu City. Registration is $25.

September 18, 6 p.m.: Mesa Public Schools presents to parents and educators at Shepard Jr. High about key stress indicators in youth like anxiety, depression and suicide. Experts from Teen Lifeline, Community Bridges, and Empact Suicide Prevention Center will attend.

September 18, 23, and 25: Helios Education Foundation is hosting a public behavioral health forums in Phoenix, Flagstaff, and Tucson to teach educators and providers about access to behavioral health services in AZ schools:

  • September 18, 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Sheraton Phoenix Airport Hotel, 1600 S. 52nd Street, Tempe. SOLD OUT
  • September 23, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Drury Inn/High Country Conference Center, 300 S. Milton Rd., Flagstaff www.signupgenius.com/go/8050E4BAFAD29A0F94-behavioral1
  • September 25, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Hotel Tucson City Center, 475 N. Granada Ave., Tucson. SOLD OUT

September 20, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona is hosting a tribal health symposium about suicide prevention resources at Talking Stick Resort, 1800 E Talking Stick Way, Scottsdale.

September 30, 7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.: Suicide survivor Kevin Hines presents his personal story at the Northern Arizona Mental Health Summit, Camp Verde School Complex, 210 Camp Lincoln Rd.

Additional resources for people at risk of suicide include the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, (800) 273-8255, a network of crisis centers dedicated to providing emotional support for individuals considering suicide and improving crisis services and awareness.

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