Enrollment options

Self enrollment (Student)

Preventing Suicide in Emergency Department Patients

Course Description

Emergency departments (EDs) play an important role in suicide prevention. This online course teaches healthcare professionals who work in an ED how to conduct screening, assessment, and brief interventions, such as safety planning and lethal means counseling. It also addresses patient-centered care for patients with suicide risk, patient safety during the ED visit, and incorporating suicide prevention into discharge planning.

After completing this course you will be able to:
  • Describe the roles primary and secondary screening play in detection and prevention of suicide risk behaviors among ED patients.
  • List the core components of suicide risk assessment.
  • Identify steps that can be taken to ensure patients at risk for suicide remain safe during their time in the ED.
  • Describe five brief interventions that can be used with low-risk ED patients who are being discharged. 
  • Explain how a discharge planning checklist can be used to promote continuity of care.
  • List three examples of patient-centered care techniques that can be used with patients at risk for suicide that can improve the quality of their visits. 

Register or Log-in to the Course

Register or log-in at https://training.sprc.org/login/index.php to access this course.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health engaged SPRC to develop this course on its behalf in recognition of the need for healthcare professionals who work in an ED to use best practices in addressing this public health issue. 

This course is open to anyone. It is designed especially for healthcare professionals (e.g., physicians, nurses, behavioral health providers) who work in EDs with patients at risk of suicide.

While this course was developed for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and contains some data from Massachusetts, the course material is applicable to professionals who live anywhere.

Course Length
This course can be completed in approximately two hours. You do not have to complete the course in one session. You can exit the course at any time and return later to the place where you left off.

To receive a certificate of completion you must complete the entire course, pass the post-test (passing score is 80% or higher), and answer the feedback survey questions.

CE Credits
Continuing education credits are not offered for this course at this time. Also, we are unable to provide multiple or annual certificates of completion for any of our courses.