Year: 2004 Source: Current Psychiatry, v.3, no.11, (November 2004), p.80-82 SIEC No: 20080149

This article reviews three cases from the United States in which clinicians were sued for malpractice after the suicide or attempted suicide of a patient. In all three cases, the jury found for the defense. The author notes 4 things plaintiffs must show to win a malpractice claim: duty to care, negligence, harm, & causation. Comprehensive evaluations, decisions to hospitalize or not, documentation, & treament plans that reduce suicide risk will help to prevent patient suicide & the potential for malpractice suits. (8 refs.)