McLean Hospital and Stanford University Offer Free Suicide Assessment & Prevention Course

93% of adults think suicide can be prevented; this course provides updated guidance to support professionals and other mental health advocates

September 20, 2022

On Wednesday, October 26, McLean Hospital and the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Stanford University School of Medicine are offering a free virtual workshop on suicide assessment and prevention.

Suicide-Focused Assessment and Treatment: An Update for Professionals will feature presentations on the current efficacy of suicide prevention interventions, the use of new clinical technologies, considerations for special populations including groups disproportionately affected by suicide, such as LGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities, as well as insights from a clinician with lived experience.

“It is critical that we, as clinicians, educators, and trusted members of our communities, arm ourselves with skills that we can apply in our daily work to better care for those who are most vulnerable and need our support,” said Scott L. Rauch, MD, McLean’s president and psychiatrist in chief.

“By sharing our knowledge of cutting-edge advances in suicide-focused assessment and treatment through workshops like this, we are having a positive impact on our communities.”

Facts About Suicide

According to data gathered as of 2020:

  • 12.2 million American adults thought seriously about suicide
  • 3.2 million planned a suicide attempt
  • 1.2 million attempted suicide
  • The rate of suicide is highest in middle-aged white men
  • On average, there are 130 suicides per day
  • In 2020, suicide was among the top 9 leading causes of death for people ages 10-64; suicide was the second leading cause of death for people ages 10-14 and 25-34

Studies show that over the past two decades the suicide rate has increased significantly, with nearly 50,000 people currently dying by suicide in America each year.

According to Doug Jacobs, MD, who co-directs this course, and who also founded the website Stop A Suicide Today, this increase has come at a time when “there are more and more resources available to help us address the issue.”

According to Jacobs and course co-director Alan F. Schatzberg, MD, the workshop will help attendees identify current risk factors, including recognizing the vulnerability of special populations and younger adults, while also evaluating effective treatment methods for adolescents experiencing suicidal ideation.

Continuing education credits (CME, CEU) are available for health care professionals who attend.

CME/CEU Credits Available On Demand

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The live course has passed, but on-demand continuing education credits are available for various disciplines for a small administrative fee. Register now to learn at your own pace.

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Facts About the McLean/Stanford Suicide Assessment & Prevention Course

  • Half-day event features national experts discussing cutting-edge advances in suicide-focused assessment and treatment
  • Aimed at psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, social workers, and other health care professionals
  • Workshop is free for those not seeking continuing education credits
  • Registration is now open

By utilizing an online webinar format, Jacobs and Schatzberg, each who have dedicated their careers to suicide prevention, aim to bring up-to-date information on suicide to clinicians and health professionals who may not be getting it elsewhere.

“Because there is often a lag in time between what is presented in the printed literature and new advances in the field, it made sense to use a virtual webinar to show the state-of-the-art in both assessment and treatment to this audience,” said Jacobs.

To further this goal, the webinar will offer attendees access to exclusive digital content.

“This dynamic document is updated regularly,” Jacobs reported. “There is an overview of epidemiology, approaches to suicide assessment, a look at newer treatments, and a focus on safety planning.”

For Jacobs, the webinar builds on his more than 30 years of work in suicide prevention and treatment.

“This event is really a public service—and a labor of love for me,” Jacobs said. “It’s going to be a high-quality program, providing important resources and information for all clinicians.”

Learn more about the course agenda and register at

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