Center for Suicide Prevention and Research

In response to the Nationwide Children Hospital’s behavioral health initiative, the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research (CSPR) was created in 2015 to address the growing problem of suicide among youth. CSPR is a joint partnership with Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion and the Abigail Wexner Research Institute.

Nationally, suicide has emerged as the second leading cause of death for children ages 10-19 years old. 

  • Nearly 1 in 6 teens has seriously contemplated suicide in the past year.
  • Suicide affects people of all backgrounds. 
  • Early identification of risk factors can aid behavioral health specialists in prevention strategies for youth at risk of suicide.
  • Suicide is complex and tragic yet often preventable if communities are provided with the right tools.

The Center for Suicide Prevention and Research is located in the Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion (map and directions) at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, the largest and most comprehensive center dedicated exclusively to child and adolescent behavioral and mental health on a pediatric medical campus in the United States. This partnership between the Abigail Wexner Research Institute and the Big Lots Behavioral Health Services allows for the development and implementation of evidence-based prevention strategies. 

CSPR consists of two main areas of focus: Prevention and Research.

Suicide Prevention Resources

Contact your mental health provider or county crisis line if you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis.

1 (800) 273-8255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 
The Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress. You can also text “START” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or in Ohio, text “4HOPE” or use the Lifeline Crisis Chat at

(614) 722-1800
Crisis Response Team at Nationwide Children's
Available 24/7. Ages 18 and older should call (614) 276-CARE (2273) or (888) 276-2273. For people living outside Franklin County, please call your county’s psychiatric crisis line number.

If you ever have immediate/urgent concerns about your safety or the safety of anyone else, call 911.


The primary focus of the Prevention Team in the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research is implementing the SOS Signs of Suicide prevention program in area schools with enhanced support in training for school staff, counselors and families. SOS is an evidence-based prevention tool that raises awareness of suicide, teaches students about risk factors for depression and suicide and provides students with ways to access support. The Prevention Team also offers training for school staff and counselors in best practices for depression and suicide screening, risk assessment and safety planning and consults with schools and youth-serving organizations on policy regarding suicide prevention, intervention and postvention (responding to a student suicide).  

Additionally, the Prevention Team has engaged in national efforts to improve how journalists report on suicide and to promote a dialogue on youth suicide that reduces stigma, highlights practical prevention strategies and informs the community on what to look out for and how to help youth navigate emotional crises.


The Center for Suicide Prevention and Research helps schools and community organizations in Ohio implement evidence-based prevention strategies.

Learn More

Additional Resources

Resources for Talking to Your Child After a Friend or Relative's Suicide

Learn More


The Research Team in the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research has been nationally recognized as a result of their epidemiological studies and publications on the increase in suicide deaths after Netflix's release of 13 Reasons Why, noncompliance surrounding the guidelines for reporting suicide deaths in the media after the deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdaine and the disparities in black youth attempting and dying by suicide.

Bridge Lab

The Bridge Lab focuses on the epidemiology of suicidal behavior in young people and neurocognitive vulnerability to suicidal behavior, as well as improving the quality of care for suicidal youth and adolescents who have attempted suicide.

Sheftall Lab

The Sheftall Lab conducts research to identify vulnerabilities in early to middle childhood that act as risk factors for future suicidal behavior, as there is a limited understanding of the risk factors associated with suicidal behavior in this age group.