In 2021, the U. S. recorded 1 death by suicide every 11 minutes according to the CDC Suicide Data and Statistics. Males, comprise 50% of the population, yet account for nearly 80% of U. S. suicides, followed, in order, by people 85 and older, Non-Hispanic American Indian/Alaska Natives, non-Hispanic whites, Pacific Islanders, multiracial, black, Hispanic, and non-Hispanic Asian groups. Members of sexual and other groups considered minorities are also at higher risk. Firearms are used in more than 50% of reported suicides.
For clinicians conducting a suicide risk assessment, this course, Assessing Suicide Risk, covers not only these and other statistics for practice considerations with specialty populations, but also, the statutory mandates in Florida for persons considered at risk, and those who are serving their needs. Guided by 491 Board clinicians’ respective professional codes and liability concerns, our goal is to provide essential tools. Interventions with clients apply a range of Rapid Assessment Instruments (RAIs), those assessment tools that identify and/or highlight specific characteristics and behaviors, that, once identified, can aid in facilitating and developing a viable treatment plan for persons evaluated as “at risk” of suicide.
We focus on measures and training provided by tool developers in the public domain, meaning that they are readily available to you at little to no cost. (Some are accompanied by video, webinar training, or written instructions to facilitate use.) We also offer a Case Study for practice, as a tool to enrich your client assessments and to strengthen case planning. We provide snapshots of these assessment forms in our overviews of each measure, provide a data profile, and a link to their locations, most of which include instructions for use. We have also included a course Bibliography. NOTE: This course was updated in June 2023 (from July 2020).
- List at least 3 patient/client populations identified in the empirical literature as being at greater risk of suicide or suicide attempts.
- List 3 patient/client care levels to consider when conducting a suicide assessment.
- List 3 patient/client presentations, if noted during a clinical assessment for an at-risk client at suicide risk, that would indicate the need for in-patient hospitalization.
- List 3 major areas clinicians should evaluate prior to selecting any Rapid Assessment Instrument (RAI) for use in practice.