This initiative supports research to test the effectiveness of combined strategies to both detect and intervene to reduce the risk of suicide, suicide ideation and behavior (SIB), and/or non-suicidal self-harm (NSSI) specifically among children, adolescents, and transition-age youth/young adults from underserved populations. Specifically, this Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) encourages services research aimed at testing easily implemented systems-level interventions and strategies that improve systematic risk identification, coordinated referral to, or engagement and retention in quality care for prevention of SIB and/or NSSI among adolescents and children from the targeted populations. Opportunities for detection and prevention in youth may occur at various points of contact across an array of mental health specialty and non-specialty settings.

The service strategies to be tested under this announcement should be designed for delivery in typical service settings using commonly available personnel and resources, to enhance implementation and future uptake in diverse settings, and thereby reduce risk of suicide and self-harm. Given the importance of cultural, social, and contextual factors, the intervention strategies should account for individual-, family-, community-, provider-, and organizational-level factors to optimize effectiveness, feasibility, acceptability, rapid uptake and sustained delivery. The strategy should also improve connections to preventive and treatment interventions with proven effectiveness in reducing SIB or NSSI, with the goal of making these interventions more available, accessible, and more effectively delivered to youth, in a sustained and coordinated way. This NOFO encourages research focused on systems-level interventions and is not intended to support the development or testing of new screening tools, assessment instruments, or individual-level preventive or therapeutic interventions.

This NOFO is published in parallel to a companion R34 NOFO (RFA-MH-25-125) supporting pilot studies in preparation for the larger-scale studies described here. This NOFO is focused on services interventions for use in settings that primarily serve underserved youth.