Year: 2023 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. (2021), 51(2), 220-228. SIEC No: 20230067
Objective To develop an online suicide prevention gatekeeper training program to prepare community pharmacy staff to communicate with patients who exhibit warning signs of suicide. Method A convenience sample of 17 community pharmacy staff members completed a 1-hr semi-structured interview during which they viewed content from an existing gatekeeper training program and provided suggestions for improvement. Once thematic saturation was achieved, interviews were digitally recorded, transcribed, and analyzed by two independent coders who reached consensus on the themes present in each transcript. Results Participants noted barriers to communicating about suicide, including lack of time and privacy, discomfort with using the word “suicide” and limited referral options. Participants wanted gatekeeper training to include local suicide prevention referral resources, take less than 30 min to complete, and incorporate 3–4 realistic role play scenarios, including a phone interaction. Conclusions Many environmental, interpersonal, and individual-level barriers complicate pharmacy staff members’ ability to act as gatekeepers and communicate about suicide with at-risk patients. To maximize the public health impact of pharmacy staff, skills-based training on how to identify, communicate with, and refer at-risk patients is needed. Gatekeeper training should model brief, realistic interactions with patients and provide pharmacy staff with local referral resources.