Year: 2022 Source: Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy, (2022), 29(5), 1530-1541. SIEC No: 20221015
Background Research indicates that the emergency department is the primary setting for people to present with suicidal ideation. Attempting to provide interventions for this population depends greatly on understanding their needs and life circumstances at the time of presentation to services, therefore enabling more appropriate treatment pathways and services to be provided. Aim This review aims to collate, evaluate and synthesize the empirical research focused on the population of people presenting to hospital settings with suicidal ideation. Method A systematic literature search was performed. Articles that met a specified set of inclusion criteria including participants being over 18, not being admitted to hospital and presenting to an emergency department setting underwent a quality assessment and data analysis. The quality assessment used was the EPHPP Quality Assessment Tool for Quantitative StudiesĀ (Thomas et al., 2004). Results Twenty-seven articles were included in the review. Studies were quantitative and of reasonable methodological quality (Thomas et al., 2004). The literature was characterized by demographic information, mental health factors associated with the presentation to hospital and treatment pathways or outcomes reported. The reviewed research showed that people presenting to emergency departments with suicidal ideation were varying in age, gender, ethnic background and socio-economic status (SES). Large proportions of studies reported psychosocial factors alongside interpersonal struggles as the main presenting reason. The review highlights large variability across these factors. Mental health diagnosis was common, previous suicide attempt was a risk factor, and treatment pathways were unclear. The review identifies the outstanding gaps and weaknesses in this literature as well as areas in need of future research. Conclusions In conclusion, the review highlights the prevalence of people reporting interpersonal factors as the reason for suicidal ideation and not mental health disorders or diagnosis. Despite this, no mention of trauma or life stories was made in any study assessing this population. Despite a large variation across studies making synthesis difficult, data proves clinically relevant and informative for future practice and guidance on areas needing further research.