Recommendations for Preventing Inpatient Suicide
In the article Inpatient Suicides: Recommendations for Prevention published by the Joint Commission in 1998, we see the first mention of inpatient suicide being a problem. Two years prior to this article, The Joint Commission started sending out “Sentinel Event Alerts” to bring awareness to adverse events in the medical field. This was the 7th of over 40 issues that have currently been released by The Joint Commission.
Since The Joint Commission enacted its Sentinel Event Policy two years ago, the accreditation committee of The Joint Commission’s Board of Commissioners has has reviewed 65 cases related to inpatient suicides.
In this issue, experts recommend that organizations examine their environment of care to make sure that patients do not have access to items that could be considered harmful to them. They also state that in “75 percent of the cases, the method of suicide was a hanging in a bathroom, bedroom or closet.”