Factors Contributing to Therapists’ Distress After the Suicide of a Patient
Hendin H~~Haas A P~~et al.
Therapists for 34 patients who died by suicide completed a questionnaire about their reactions, wrote case narratives, & participated in a workshop. Thirteen of the 34 therapists were severely distressed. Four factors were identified as sources of severe distress: failure to hospitalize a suicidal patient who then died, a treatment decision the therapist felt led to the suicide, negative reactions from the therapistÕs institution, & fear of a lawsuit by the patientÕs relatives. Further study is needed to discover the long-term effects of patient suicide on professional practice. (17 refs)