Virginia in Numbers

Virginia is working to address specific behavioral health and substance use issues across the state. Key areas of focus for Virginia’s prevention efforts include: youth alcohol use, youth and adult binge drinking, youth tobacco/nicotine use (cigarette and e-cigarette use), suicide/mental health, and opioid, stimulant, and OTC overdoses and misuse. For an overview of specific behavioral health indicators in VA, visit the Virginia Social Indicator Dashboard (VASIS).

Our Prevention Work in Numbers

Virginia’s prevention workforce is implementing many impactful initiatives in their communities. Some of these initiatives are described in more detail below. For a comprehensive look at the prevention efforts taking place across Virginia, please see Our Initiatives.

About each prevention initiative


ACEs Trainings:

  • ACEs trainings teach participants about the biological, health, and social impacts of ACEs and strategies to support the health and well-being of community members.

Virginia’s Required Suicide Prevention Trainings

  • ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) is an in-person suicide prevention training program that helps participants assess those at risk of suicide. ASIST trainers are those who have gone through extensive training to be able to lead and train others.
  • MHFA (Mental Health First Aid) is an in-person or virtual skills-based training course teaching participants about substance use and mental health issues. MHFA trainers are those who have gone through extensive training to be able to lead and train others.
  • QPR (Question. Persuade. and Refer.) is an in-person and virtual training that guides participants through these three steps to prevent suicide.


  • Virginia is building community connections through coalitions that support strategy implementation by creating a network of stakeholders.

Lock and Talk

  • Lock and Talk efforts educate communities in storing and securing lethal means while distributing safety devices, which include medication lock boxes, gun trigger locks, and gun cable locks.

Counter Tools

  • The SYNAR program works to prevent underage tobacco use and distribution. This program is measured by tracking the rate of compliance of tobacco retailers preventing sales to underage youth in Virginia.