Nursing: Assessment and Prevention of Suicide for Healthcare Professionals

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About this Course

This course is intended for all healthcare professionals who care for individuals and veterans at-risk for suicide or who are survivors of suicide. The course discusses the background, statistical data, etiology, risk factors for, and treatment and management of suicide in the United States. Risk of imminent harm with communication strategies is presented with a special focus on the veteran and healthcare workers populations. 

Learning Outcomes:
Upon completion of this course, the learner will be able to:
  • Identify risk factors for suicide.
  • Discuss the reasons for an increased risk of suicide among the adolescent, healthcare workers, veteran, and LBGTQ populations.
  • Describe treatment and management of suicidal ideations (management of suicidal behaviors).
  • Understand the prevalence of suicide within the medical setting.
  • Select appropriate ways of assessing patients at risk for suicide.
  • Screen patients for depression using the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-2).
  • Screen the severity of suicidality using the Columbia Suicide Risk Assessment.
  • Address safety for patients who are at risk for suicide through lethal means removal and creation of a crisis response plan.
  • Collaborate with other healthcare colleagues on patient’s depression and level of suicidality.
  • Plan interventions related to the suicidal patient’s depression and underlying causes.
  • Identify when to refer a suicidal patient to a mental health specialist.
  • List various resources available to assist healthcare providers in managing suicidal risk in patients.
  • Discuss the COVID-19 pandemic effects on suicide.

About the Author
Shellie D. Hill, DNP, FNC-BC

Shellie D. Hill, DNP, FNP-BC, currently serves as full-time faculty as the FNP program coordinator and assistant professor in the MSN-NP program at Saint Louis University. She has been a practicing family nurse practitioner for 19 years and an RN for 26 years. Most of her clinical practice has been in primary care, but she also has experience in urgent care and cardiology. Clinically, she works in corporate healthcare clinics part time, and she volunteers as an FNP in a clinic that manages underserved patients.

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