Suicide risk in male incarcerated individuals in Spain: Clinical, criminological and prison‑related correlates

Background Prison suicide is a complex phenomenon that may be influenced by individual, clinical, social and environmental factors. In Spain, few studies have explored the relationship with institutional, prison-related variables. The aim of this study is to examine correlates of suicide in a sample of male incarcerated individuals from 5 Spanish penitentiary centers. Methods This […]

Suicide in state prisons in the United States: Highlighting gaps in data

Objectives: Our objectives were to document data availability and reporting on suicide mortality in state prison systems. The United States leads the world in mass incarceration, a structural determinant of health, but lacks real-time reporting of prison health statistics. This absence is particularly notable in suicides, a leading cause of death that carceral policies play […]

Can theory predict the process of suicide on entry to prison? Predicting dynamic risk factors for suicide ideation in a high-risk prison population

Background: Each year approximately 110,000 people are imprisoned in England and Wales and new prisoners remain one of the highest risk groups for suicide across the world. The reduction of suicide in prisoners remains difficult as assessments and interventions tend to rely on static risk factors with few theoretical or integrated models yet evaluated. Aims: To identify […]

Witnessing suicide-related behavior in prison: A qualitative study of young male prisoners in England

Background: Rates of suicide and suicide-related behavior (SRB) are high in prison. Those witnessing such behavior may develop psychological morbidity. Most previous studies have been quantitative. Little has been written about the witnesses’ qualitative experience. Aims: The aim of the study was to explore, through interview and then thematic analysis, the core concerns of those witnessing another’s […]

A typology of male prisoners making near-lethal suicide attempts

Background: Prisoners are at high risk of suicide. Aims: This study aimed to develop a typology of prison suicide. Method: We interviewed 60 male prisoners who made near-lethal suicide attempts in prison to obtain quantitative and qualitative data regarding psychiatric, psychological, social, and criminological factors. We analyzed this information to develop a typology to classify suicidal prisoners and […]

Perceptions of a peer suicide prevention program by inmates and professionals working in prisons: Underestimation of risk, the modification of the field, and the role of self-consciousness

Background: Suicide prevention is a major challenge for penal institutions in many countries. The traditional approach relies on the expertise of health professionals and is supplemented by the intervention of other professionals and the inmates themselves. New methods of suicide prevention based on peer support have been developed in recent years. Peer prevention programs rely on […]

People in custody with a suicidal history: An ideation-to-action perspective involving individuals incarcerated in two U.S. jails

Objective: Despite high suicide mortality in U.S. jails, little is known about the cognitive (ideation) and behavioral (attempt) spectrum of suicide risk in this population. Identifying factors associated with the development of suicidal ideation, as well as the translation of thoughts to acts of suicide, is important for suicide prevention. Method: Using data from a cross-sectional study […]

Heat-related mortality in U.S. state and private prisons: A case-crossover analysis

Rising temperatures and heatwaves increase mortality. Many of the subpopulations most vulnerable to heat-related mortality are in prisons, facilities that may exacerbate temperature exposures. Yet, there is scare literature on the  impacts of heat among incarcerated populations. We analyzed data on mortality in U.S. state and private prisons from 2001–2019 linked to daily maximum temperature […]

The impact of correctional officer gender on prison suicide

Correctional officers are critical members of the prison community. However, scholarship rarely considers how correctional officers contribute to prison outcomes instead largely focusing on importation (individual) and deprivation (organizational) factors related to the incarcerated population. This is also true regarding how scholars and practitioners approach suicide committed by incarcerated people, one of the leading causes […]

Substance use-related suicide after release from correctional, behavioral health, and healthcare facilities using national violent death reporting system data

Introduction Suicide and substance use are prevalent problems among persons discharged from facilities. This study (1) articulated rates of substance-related suicide deaths among those discharged correctional, behavioral health, and healthcare facilities, and (2) identified factors associated with substance-related suicide deaths unique to, or generalizing across, facility discharge. Methods We used data from the National Violent […]

Exploring the relationship between domestic violence perpetration and suicidal behavior in male prisoners

This study is the first to explore the relationship between domestic violence perpetration and suicidal behavior in prisoners in England and Wales. The nature of this relationship is unclear, however, understanding and reducing suicide in prisons is a critical issue for frontline staff and policy makers. Eight participants with a history of suicide attempts and […]

Re-examining the dual harm profile: An assessment using US prison population-level data

Dual harm behaviour has recently gained scholarly attention. Dual harm centres on a subset of people who display violent and self-harming behaviour. This study re-examines the differential profile characteristics identified in Europe for those who dual harm, using international data featuring a population study of a state prison system in the south-eastern United States. Three […]

Using life trajectories analysis to characterize suicide attempts in prison

Background: Suicide in prison is a major problem and several risk factors have been identified in the literature (e.g., period of incarceration, depressive disorders). Aims: The study examined the impact of several risk factors for suicide attempts before and during incarceration using life trajectory analysis of inmates by interviews with informants. Method: The lifetime of inmates with a history of […]

Lessons learnt from the narratives of women who self-harm in prison

Background: In England and Wales, women in prison make up a minority (<5%) of the total custodial population, yet acts of self-harm are around five times more common among incarcerated women. While there has been a multiagency effort to improve how acts of self-harm are documented across prisons, the patterns and functions of self-harm for women […]

The European Human Rights system and the right to life seen through suicide prevention in places of detention: Between risk management and punishment

This paper analyses the shortcomings of European suicide prevention policy in places of detention, a topic that has been neglected in the European legal literature. Four interrelated characteristics of the suicide prevention policies developed by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) are responsible for the failures of these policies. First, the risk-based approach relies […]

Multidimensional approach to suicide prevention in jails and prisons: The best defense against liability lawsuits

Inmates in jails and prisons are a high-risk group for suicide. Often, legal claims of medical negligence and §1983 based on deliberate indifference by the correctional officials follow. Unique stable and dynamic factors and circumstances and their interaction explain most suicides. A systematic suicide screening using a well-designed suicide screening questionnaire that captures known risk […]

Mental health, substance abuse, prison victimization and suicide attempts amongst incarcerated women

Worldwide, incarcerated women are known to suffer adverse experiences that might increase the risk of suicide attempts during incarceration. The present investigation examines the prevalence of suicide attempts amongst incarcerated women in Spain and the factors associated with this. Between January and March of 2017 a total of 174 women, enrolled from two prisons in […]

Risk factors for suicide in prisons: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Background Rates of suicide among people in prison are elevated compared with people of similar age and sex who are living in the community. Improving assessments and interventions to reduce suicide risk requires updated evidence on risk factors. We aimed to examine risk factors associated with suicide in prisoners. Methods We did an updated systematic […]

Suicide in prisons: Active deviation profile

The interpretative path of suicide finds its maximum expression in the theorizations of Èmile Durkheim who classifies suicide as a social pathology and as a result of a general social fragility. The more generic theme of “deaths” in prison began to arouse the interest of scholars around the mid-19th century, a period in which “suicide […]

Prison staff’s views and understanding of the role of emotions in prisoner suicide and violence

Suicide and violence are a major concern in prisons, and it has been suggested that alexithymia may be associated with these behaviours. Alexithymia can be defined as the inability to identify and describe emotions. This study aimed to explore staff’s understanding and attitudes about identifying and discussing emotions in prisoner suicide and violence. Twenty prison […]

Prevalence and risk factors for mental health problems and suicidal expressions among young male prisoners in Cambodia: A cross-sectional study

Background: incarceration and mental health problems are empirically known to have a strong association. Many studies have confirmed the high prevalence of mental health problems among young prisoners in particular, yet none have been conducted in Cambodia. Objectives: this study aimed first to assess the prevalence of mental health problems and suicidal expressions among young […]

Preventing suicide in jails and prisons

Suicide is often the single most common cause of death in correctional settings. Jails, prisons and penitentiaries are responsible for protecting the health and safety of their inmate populations, and the failure to do so, can be open to legal challenge. Further fuelled by media interest, a suicide in correctional facility can easily escalate into […]

Non-suicidal self-injury and co-occurring suicide attempt in male prisoners

High rates of non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) and suicide attempts (SA) are well documented in prisoners, however, few studies examined their co-occurrence in this high-risk population. Study participants were 1203 adult men randomly selected from 15 Belgian prisons, representing 12% of the national male prison population. Lifetime prevalence rates for NSSI and SA are 17% and […]