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Clin Pediatr Emerg Med. 2013 Mar 1;14(1):28-34.

Enhanced Mental Health Interventions in the Emergency Department: Suicide and Suicide Attempt Prevention in the ED.

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Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles.


Suicide is the third leading cause of death in adolescents, and often youths with suicidal behavior or ideation present to the emergency department (ED) for care. Many suicidal youths do not receive mental health care after discharge from the ED, and interventions are needed to enhance linkage to outpatient intervention. This paper describes the Family Intervention for Suicide Prevention (FISP). Designed for use in emergency settings, the FISP is a family-based cognitive-behavior therapy session designed to increase motivation for follow-up treatment, support, coping, and safety, augmented by care linkage telephone contacts after discharge. In a randomized trial of the intervention, the FISP was shown to significantly increase the likelihood of youths receiving outpatient treatment, including psychotherapy and combined medication and psychotherapy. The FISP is a brief, focused, efficacious treatment that can be delivered in the ED to improve the probability of follow-up treatment for suicidal youths.


adolescents; cognitive behavior intervention; family; suicide prevention

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