World Social Psychiatry

ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year
: 2020  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 31--42

Systematic Suicide Screening in a General Hospital Setting: Process and Initial Results


Andres J Pumariega1, Kolin Good2, Kelly Posner3, Udema Millsaps2, Barbara Romig2, Debra Stavarski2, Robert Rice2, Mary Jo Gehret2, Kevin Riley2, Thomas E Wasser4, Gayle Walsh2, Heather Yarger5 
1 Department of Psychiatry, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
2 Department of Nursing, Psychiatry, and Information Management Systems, The Reading Hospital and Medical Center, Reading, PA, USA
3 Department of Psychiatry, Suicide Prevention Center, School of Medicine, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA
4 Complete Statistical Services, Macungie, PA, USA
5 Department of Psychology, University of Maryland, College Park MD, USA

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Andres J Pumariega
Department of Psychiatry, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
USA

Background: Suicide is one of the leading causes of death across all age groups globally and poses a significant public health burden. In response to the United States Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goals, a tertiary hospital in the Northeast U.S. developed a suicide risk assessment and response protocol, consisting of systematic screening of patients for suicidal ideation/behavior with a screening version of the Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) and a response algorithm based on risk levels derived from the screen. Methods: A total of 837 nurses were trained and 24,168 patients ages 12 and above were screened with the C-SSRS Screener. Results: Posttraining interrater reliability on the C-SSRS Screener definitions of ideation and behavior was high and independent of level of education or mental health experience. Of the patients screened, only 144 patients (0.93%) were in the highest risk category, and they were assigned patient safety monitors until a follow-up consultation. The highest risk levels from the C-SSRS Screener reasonably identified subsequent attempts at self-injurious behavior during hospitalization. Screening resulted in lower burden due to reduction in the rate of psychiatric consultations and one-to-one observation shifts. Conclusions: These findings suggest that a systematic screening and clinical response protocol using the C-SSRS Screener can potentially enhance the ability to identify suicide risk in the general hospital population and focus services on patients with the most need.


How to cite this article:
Pumariega AJ, Good K, Posner K, Millsaps U, Romig B, Stavarski D, Rice R, Gehret MJ, Riley K, Wasser TE, Walsh G, Yarger H. Systematic Suicide Screening in a General Hospital Setting: Process and Initial Results.World Soc Psychiatry 2020;2:31-42


How to cite this URL:
Pumariega AJ, Good K, Posner K, Millsaps U, Romig B, Stavarski D, Rice R, Gehret MJ, Riley K, Wasser TE, Walsh G, Yarger H. Systematic Suicide Screening in a General Hospital Setting: Process and Initial Results. World Soc Psychiatry [serial online] 2020 [cited 2021 Apr 22 ];2:31-42
Available from: https://www.worldsocpsychiatry.org/article.asp?issn=2667-1077;year=2020;volume=2;issue=1;spage=31;epage=42;aulast=Pumariega;type=0