Managing Suicide Risk in Primary Care: Practice Recommendations for Behavioral Health Consultants


Psychologists working in primary care clinics can have a significant positive impact on preventing suicide. For psychologists working within the behavioral health consultant (BHC) model in primary care, however, the issue of how to appropriately manage suicide risk within this model has yet to be adequately addressed. Given the time-limited and focused nature of the BHC model, it is important to establish a framework for psychologists to provide adequate care that is practical within this model of health care. This article offers 26 empirically supported recommendations for suicide screening, accurate and time-efficient risk assessment, and effective risk management strategies, as well as suggestions for consultation with primary care physicians, all of which are consistent with the BHC model. © 2009 American Psychological Association.

Publication Title

Professional Psychology: Research and Practice