The Chronological Assessment of Suicide Events: A Practical Interviewing Strategy for the Elicitation of Suicidal Ideation

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Suicide assessment is one of the cornerstones of daily clinical practice for both mental health professionals and primary care clinicians. A practical interviewing strategy for efficiently eliciting valid suicidal ideation is presented. The strategy is illustrated via a reconstructed interview designed to highlight key teaching points. The strategy, the Chronological Assessment of Suicide Events (CASE Approach), helps the clinician to uncover critical data in four contiguous time frames: (1) presenting suicidal ideation/behavior, (2) recent suicidal ideation/behaviors, (3) past suicidal ideation/behaviors, and (4) immediate suicidal ideation. The CASE Approach is an easily learned interviewing strategy, designed for busy, frontline clinicians in both the mental health and primary care settings.

J Clin Psychiatry 1998;59(suppl 20):58–72