Lived Experience Consulting

I offer a lived experience perspective to health institutes, hospitals and service organizations to improve the current standard of care, to better support individuals in crisis.

I was part of the development team in creating an app (Jaspr Health) to help people who are suicidal in crisis settings. A significant part of this app is a collection of videos from people who have lived experience with suicide. When I was looking for people to interview for these videos, Diana was referred to me. I can’t say enough how incredibly helpful Diana has been. She did a masterful job in the multiple video interview sessions. She is articulate, able to convey her story from her heart in a way that inspires and engages the viewer, she takes direction very well and was able to craft her presentation to exactly what we were looking for. After the initial interviews, we recruited Diana to serve on our Lived Experience Advisory Board where she helped review and improve research procedures. She helped to guide content development from the perspective of a suicide attempt survivor and was an absolute delight to work with.”

 

Topher Jerome
Project Director
Harborview Medical Center – Behavioral Health Institute
Behavioral Health Training, Workforce and Policy Innovation Center
Seattle, Washington

When narrating my experience to staff, I am able to articulate the emotions felt in sensitive subjects, in a way that is relatable, and understandable to someone who has not experienced it personally.  Going from the darkest moment, step by step all the way to my recovery, highlighting the specific actions that are helpful and that are not helpful.  Uniting the provider or care team and the patient so that they are able to work together as a team. I am able to provide both the perspective of a patient and also as a peer.

Diana Cortez is a grounded, passionate advocate for suicide prevention, trauma response and improved mental health care, especially for diverse populations. She draws from her lived experience to provide insights that are truly insightful while also common sense. She has much to offer as consultant and presenter, especially when she works with and complements a team with mental health professionals. Her style is warm, gracious, and strong.”

 

Dr. Mike Hogan
former Chairman of President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health,
Co-developer of Zero Suicide