Suicide Risk

Suicide Risk

While the procedures used to conduct suicide risk assessments vary by agency/school, there are important foundational processes and tools one must thoroughly understand. As someone on the front line and in direct contact with clients/students, counselors need to be able to understand and implement suicide risk assessment in an instant, without hesitation. Due to this, it is critical that counselors are aware of risk factors, suicide risk assessments tools, interventions, and safety planning on the individual level.
Assignment Directions

Present a background of suicide, including:

Identify and explain key terms associated with suicide intervention, such as suicidal ideation, suicide plan, suicide attempt, etc. Briefly address terms no longer used in the field.
Identify risk factors for suicidal behavior, with a focus on cultural aspects presented and previous mental health diagnoses.
Identify prevalence/statistics within various populations (LGBTI, males, military, American Indians/Alaska Natives, etc.).

Report on suicide risk screeners and assessment tools.

Identify the difference between a suicide risk screening and assessment.
Present several instruments used (IS PATH WARM, SAFE-T, PHQ-9, etc.).

Application to case.

Choose either the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) or Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) from the Suicide Prevention and Management Webinar and apply it to the case of Anna in Chapter 7 (page 151), reporting on what her ratings on either scale would be.
Identify the following for Anna (or David): risk factors, protective factors, lethality, plan, and mandated reporting issues.
Create a safety plan for Anna (or David) using the Emotional Fire Safety Plan (Suicide Prevention and Management Webinar) and Stanley and Brown Safety Plan (6 steps). Check your work with Appendix 7.1.
Those with a school counseling focus may use the case of David in Chapter 1 (page 12), making the assumption that he did not die by suicide and applying what is in Chapters 1 and 7 pertaining to social media. Not as much information is presented and will have to be constructed by the learner if this case is chosen.
We know the racial/cultural, gender identity, and sexual identity of Anna. Address how/if that information may change your approaches. Because we do not have this information pertaining to David, those working with this case will need to make some assumptions and apply those in your analysis.

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