The Impact of Suicide on Co-patients

The Impact of Suicide on Co-patients While there is a large literature on the impact of patient suicide on care providers and on family members, and a small literature on the impact of hospital suicide on inpatients and on surviving members of a therapy group, nothing has been written about the effect of a suicide on patients in a community mental health facility. This paper discusses the potential for ripple effects and the need for extra care and surveillance when a patient commits suicide in an outpatient program for the seriously mentally ill. The paper draws on related literature (suicide in groups, hospitals, schools, and college campuses) and, using examples from a clinic for women with psychosis, makes recommendations for psychiatric intervention post suicide. After the trauma of suicide, staff needs protected time to inform and support survivors, taking special care with those seen as most vulnerable. Following a trauma such as suicide, patients tend to stay near a source of comfort, and may require extra staff time. Survivors need to make sense of what happened and to honor the dead. This brings privacy concerns to the fore, as well as staff ambivalence about the respect due to a person who should be remembered, but should not serve as a role model to fellow patients who are susceptible to contagion effects. The review that follows a suicide can lead to closure for staff and patients and to the development of a protocol to follow should similar incidents recur. Psychiatric Quarterly Springer Journals

The Impact of Suicide on Co-patients

Loading next page...
Springer US
Copyright © 2015 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Medicine & Public Health; Psychiatry; Public Health; Sociology, general
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site


  • Suicide clusters: A review of risk factors and mechanisms
    Haw, C; Hawton, K; Niedzwiedz, C; Platt, S
  • Serious untoward incidents and their aftermath in acute inpatient psychiatry: The Tompkins Acute Ward Study
    Bowers, L; Simpson, A; Eyres, S; Nijman, H; Hall, C; Grange, A; Phillips, L
  • Stress-reactivity in psychosis: evidence for an affective pathway to psychosis
    Myin-Germeys, I; Os, J
  • Resilience and thriving: Issues, models, and linkages
    Carver, CS
  • The association of suicide rates with individual-level suicide attitudes: A cross-national analysis
    Stack, S; Kposowa, AJ

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.

DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Unlimited reading

Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.

Stay up to date

Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.

Organize your research

It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

Monthly Plan

  • Read unlimited articles
  • Personalized recommendations
  • No expiration
  • Print 20 pages per month
  • 20% off on PDF purchases
  • Organize your research
  • Get updates on your journals and topic searches


Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial

Best Deal — 39% off

Annual Plan

  • All the features of the Professional Plan, but for 39% off!
  • Billed annually
  • No expiration
  • For the normal price of 10 articles elsewhere, you get one full year of unlimited access to articles.



billed annually
Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial