← News Home

Eli Lilly and Company Foundation donates $250,000 to expand Community Health Network’s Zero Suicides prevention initiative

For release on March 25, 2015

Major gift will save Hoosier lives through a suicide prevention network that responds to a critical Indiana healthcare issue

Indianapolis, IN---Community Health Network Foundation has received a $250,000 donation from the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation that provides funding needed to expand Community Health Network’s Zero Suicides initiative. The investment will be used to save Hoosier lives through early intervention and prevention, the construction of a robust Central Indiana crisis network and the utilization of innovative mental health diagnostics and treatment protocols.

This donation allows Community Behavioral Health physicians and leaders to continue implementing a bold plan launched in October 2014 to reduce the number of suicide attempts and deaths among Indiana’s youth and adults. Throughout the state, more than twice as many Hoosiers die from suicide than homicide, and suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-34 year olds and the third leading cause of death among 10-14 year olds.

Community’s Zero Suicides strategy brings crisis, telepsychiatry and intensive care coordination services to more than 600 primary care physicians, 11 emergency departments and 13 hospitals located throughout the state. These locations are a mix of Community facilities and other healthcare providers where Community provides behavioral health services, and they are all connected with 24-hour access to Community Behavioral Health Crisis Center and Hospital, Indiana’s largest and most robust acute hospital exclusively providing inpatient behavioral health services.

The Lilly Foundation donation also provides resources needed to build a Central Indiana crisis network that will include Indiana’s schools, foster care system, juvenile justice program, primary and specialty healthcare providers, policy makers and suicide survivors. These partners will be trained to identify people at risk of attempting suicide, provide timely intervention and quickly connect them with Community’s crisis providers. Indiana’s state government is a key partner in building the statewide crisis network.

Community is Indiana’s most comprehensive provider of youth behavioral health services, and announced in 2014 its commitment to becoming the first health care system in the United States to fully implement the Zero Suicides model, developed by the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention and other partners.

Community’s Zero Suicides initiative is solely funded by individual donations and grants received from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), The Glick Fund, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation, and now the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation. With this announcement, support for the suicide prevention initiative totals $4,029,084.

“The Lilly Foundation is pleased to support this critically important work,” said Dr. Ora H. Pescovitz, US Medical Leader for Eli Lilly and Company.  “We have far too many Hoosiers—including too many of our children and adolescents—who attempt or commit suicide.  It is incumbent upon all of us to do what we can to prevent these terrible tragedies.  We believe that Community, as our state’s leader in behavioral health, can make a profound difference for the better.”

“With this generous support from the Lilly Foundation, we can provide the training and resources needed to save the lives of our state’s citizens,” said Suzanne Clifford, executive vice president of behavioral health at Community. “Zero suicides is a bold goal, but no other goal is acceptable. With this funding, we will be able to radically expand our ability to provide early intervention, prevention and treatment that will save thousands of lives.”

Those concerned about someone who is contemplating suicide can call Community Health Network’s crisis hotline at 800-662-3445.

About Community Health Network Foundation
Community Health Network Foundation is the not-for-profit philanthropic organization of Community Health Network, Central Indiana’s leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them.  Donations support patients, caregivers and Central Indiana communities. For more information about Community Health Network Foundation, call 317-355-GIVE or visit eCommunity.org.

About Eli Lilly and Company Foundation
The Eli Lilly and Company Foundation is a tax-exempt private foundation established by the company in 1968. The Foundation awards cash grants for philanthropic initiatives aligned with the company's corporate responsibility priorities. Specifically, the Foundation is dedicated to:

  • Improving the lives of people who lack the resources to obtain quality health care, with a primary focus on low and middle-income countries.
  • Strengthening public education in the United States, with an emphasis on science and math education.
Ryan Chelli, Media Relations
Ryan Chelli