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Am J Psychiatry. 1988 Feb;145(2):224-8.

Patients' suicides: frequency and impact on psychiatrists.

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  • 1University of Hawaii, Honolulu.


Results of a national survey of randomly selected psychiatrists revealed that 51% (N = 131) of the 259 respondents had had a patient who committed suicide. This event had an impact on both their personal and their professional lives. Sixty-five psychiatrists reported stress levels in the weeks following the suicide that were comparable to levels reported in studies of people seeking treatment after the death of a parent. Younger, less-experienced clinicians were more affected by a patient's suicide than older clinicians with more experience. Implications of these results for the training and practice of psychiatrists are discussed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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