This vital resource–edited by Harvard Medical School’s Douglas Jacobs, a nationally recognized expert on suicide and depression–is the definitive guide for helping mental health professionals determine the risk for suicide and appropriate interventions for suicidal or at-risk patients. Created primarily for mental health clinicians (with several chapters directed toward primary care physicians), the book is a hands-on guide for those who are often the first line of defense for assessing if a patient or client is suicidal.
Comprehensive in scope, the book offers a wealth of information about such useful topics as inpatient and outpatient issues, psychopharmacology, and advice about working with special populations. Most importantly, the book’s contributors detail effective techniques for intervention and offer a model of suicide assessment that focuses on predisposing conditions, potentiating conditions, and specific suicide inquiries. As a special feature, the book also includes a helpful section on contracts–agreements made with the patient not to harm themselves–and useful facts about the subsequent liability issues. In addition, there is a compelling analysis of the controversial issues surrounding assisted suicide as well as an honest personal account of suicidality from a professional who has experienced it for herself.