Suicide risk assessments don’t work

No one should be dismissed as low risk, say experts

The current system of categorising a patient’s risk for suicide isn’t working, according to psychiatrists.

suicidal figure

Classifying patients as high, medium or low risk doesn’t assist suicide prevention because the difference in risk is too small.

In fact, the authors of a new report suggest it may be dangerous as it can provide false reassurance.

“Under most of these risk categorisations, more people will suicide in the low-risk group than in the high-risk group,” says co-author Associate Professor Christopher Ryan, from the University of Sydney.