Fear of psychiatric hospitalization is one of the primary reasons that older men — an age and gender group at high risk for suicide — don’t talk about suicide with their physicians, according to a new study co-authored by Dr. Paul Duberstein, chair of the Department of Health Behavior, Society and Policy at the Rutgers School of Public Health.
Researchers discovered this finding as part of a pre-launch, stakeholder assessment of a multimedia program designed to encourage men to open up to their primary care providers about suicidal thoughts. Called MAPS, for Men and Providers Preventing Suicide, the program will eventually be integrated into doctors’ office waiting areas.
The MAPS assessment was led by Dr. Anthony Jerant, chair of family and community medicine at UC Davis Health, and is published in the journal Patient Education and Counseling.
Stakeholders who participated in the evaluation included 44 suicide survivors, prevention advocates, and family members of those who attempted or died by suicide.
Dr. Jerant and his team created MAPS because 80 percent of suicide deaths occur in men, with the biggest increase in the past two decades among men between the ages of 35 and 64. In addition, nearly half off all adults who die by suicide saw a primary care clinician within the month prior to their deaths.
Their work was funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UC Davis Behavioral Health Center of Excellence, UC Davis Health Department of Family and Community Medicine, and Sonoma State University.
The study, “Stakeholder Views Regarding a Planned Primary Care Office-based Interactive Multimedia Suicide Prevention Tool,” is available online.Tags: Friday Letter Submission