Internet Safety, Suicide and Self-Harm - elearning for healthcare
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This programme is in partnership with...
  • Health Education England_New logo 2021
  • samaritans logo

Available on the Learning Hub

This programme has moved to the NHS Learning Hub. We recommend you read the information on this webpage to find out more about the programme before you access the learning (

More information about the Learning Hub and the migration of elfh programmes can be found here.

This programme was originally located on the elfh hub and was first published on 11th Oct 2022. It migrated on to the Learning Hub on 9th May 2024.

About the programme

The internet plays a big part in people’s lives, however online activity is often overlooked when exploring people’s experiences around suicide and self-harm.

For many people the internet is an important source of support, but some online content can be harmful: acting to maintain or exacerbate self-harm or suicide thoughts and behaviours.

Talking about online activity around suicide and self-harm with the people you work with can help you better understand their needs. Through these conversations you can support them to stay safe and have positive experiences online.

This course is relevant to anyone who provides support around suicide and self-harm, including:

  • Mental health practitioners, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, therapists, counsellors, Mental Health Support Teams (MHSTs)
  • Education based practitioners, such as school nurses, educational psychologists, behaviour support teams
  • Learning disability and autism specific practitioners
  • Emergency care practitioners
  • Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) practitioners
  • Social Workers
  • And more

The session takes approximately 30 minutes to complete. By the end you will know:

  • Why it’s important to ask people about their internet use around suicide and self-harm.
  • What people do online and the potential risks and benefits of exploring suicide and self-harm online.
  • How to ask the people you support about their internet use.
  • What advice you can give to help people stay safe and have positive experiences online.

More information

This course was developed by Samaritans’ Online Harms team. We promote excellence in suicide prevention and the online environment, working closely with academics, industry and government partners.

Our information for practitioners on internet safety, suicide and self-harm was developed with the support of a steering group in the North East and Yorkshire Region with colleagues from: Durham County Council Public health, Middlesbrough Council Public health, Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, Northumbria University and Northumbria Police. The project has been funded by Nominet.

To develop this guidance we have engaged over 200 practitioners from different professional backgrounds, including mental health nurses, GPs, counsellors and more. They shared their experiences and concerns through a series of workshops and in-depth interviews.

We also worked with a panel of people with lived experience of internet use around suicide and self-harm to co-design the messaging and content. Through a series of workshops, they shared their views on how practitioners can better support people to stay safe online with regards to suicide and self-harm.

Meet the team

  • Francesca Edmans

    Digital Project Manager, Online Harms, Samaritans
  • Lydia Grace

    Programme Lead, Online Excellence, Samaritans
  • Jacqui Morrissey

    Assistant Director of Research & Influencing, Samaritans
  • Nicole Beckford

    Nicole Beckford

    Senior Project Manager, HEE elearning for healthcare
  • Alice Denham

    Alice Denham

    Learning Designer, HEE elearning for healthcare
  • Catherine Moran

    Graphic Designer, HEE elearning for healthcare
  • Kieron_Bradshaw_80x80

    Kieron Bradshaw

    Communications Officer, HEE elearning for healthcare

How to access

In order to access any elfh programme, you will need an elfh account. If you do not have one, then you can register by selecting the Register button below.

Register >

To view the Internet Safety, Suicide and Self-Harm programme, select the View button below.  If you already have an account with elfh, you will also be able to login and enrol on the programme from the View button.

View >

If you already have an account with elfh, then you can enrol on to the Internet Safety, Suicide and Self-Harm  programme by logging in to the elfh Hub, selecting My Account > Enrolment and selecting the programme. You can then access the programme immediately in the My e-Learning section.

NHS healthcare staff in England – ESR

The Internet Safety, Suicide and Self-Harm programme is also available to NHS healthcare staff via the Electronic Staff Record (ESR). Accessing this e-learning via ESR means that your completions will transfer with you throughout your NHS career.

Further details are available here.

Not an NHS organisation?

If you are not an NHS health or care organisation and therefore do not qualify for free access elfh Hub, you may be able to access the service by creating an OpenAthens account.

To check whether or not you qualify for free access via OpenAthens, you can view the eligibility criteria and register on the ‘OpenAthens’ portal.

Registering large numbers of users

If you are a HR, IT or Practice Manager and would like to register and enrol large numbers of staff within your organisation for access onto the Internet Safety, Suicide and Self-Harm programme, please contact elfh directly.

More information

Please select the following link for more information on how to use the elfh Hub.

Select here for more information on the authorisations process to run reports on the learning activity of staff.

Select the following link for more information about CPD points.

elfh is a NHS England programme in partnership with the NHS and professional bodies