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Appears in Collections:Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Ambiguity Uncertainty and Risk: Reframing the task of suicide risk assessment and prevention in acute in-patient mental health
Author(s): Paterson, Brodie
Cassels, C
Graham, A
Dowding, Dawn
McComish, Alexander
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Keywords: Suicide
Risk Assessment
Mental health policy
Issue Date: Jan-2007
Date Deposited: 9-Jun-2011
Citation: Paterson B, Cassels C, Graham A, Dowding D & McComish A (2007) Ambiguity Uncertainty and Risk: Reframing the task of suicide risk assessment and prevention in acute in-patient mental health. Irish Nurse, 8 (2), pp. 22-25.
Abstract: The work of the National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide by People with Mental Illness has served to draw attention to the issue of suicide amongst users of mental health services including inpatient and provided the basis for a series of recommendations aimed at improving practice (Appleby et al., 2001, NIMHE 2003). Such recommendations include further training on risk assessment for practitioners. However, representing the problem of suicide as one which can be 'managed' by risk assessment particularly quantitative actuarial approaches implicitly misrepresents the phenomena of suicidality as something which can predicted and therefore managed may be inherently unpredictable at the level of the individual over the short term. We need instead to acknowledge that our work with service users who may be contemplating suicide embraces and acknowledges both uncertainty and ambiguity and seeks to assess risk phenomenologically at the level of the individual such that by understanding their reasons for living and dying we can work in partnership with them to find hope.
Rights: The publisher has granted permission for use of this article in this Repository. The article was first published in Irish Nurse by Global Media & Exhibitions Ltd / Strathayr Publishing.

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