Interdisciplinary skills in suicide risk assessment: A primer for chronic pain clinicians

Alan Robert Bowman, Caítriona Collins

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationEditorial


Persistent pain can have a marked impact on a person’s mental health, meaning that care needs beyond physical symptom management are commonplace. Suicide risk (i.e., having thoughts about ending one’s life, or engaging in behaviours to achieve this aim) is one such example of a care need that clinicians working with persistent pain populations may encounter in their practice.

Effective management of persistent pain requires interdisciplinary working, and many pain services in the United Kingdom are structured in a way to reflect this. This means that any member of an interdisciplinary care team could encounter a suicidal patient.
This article has two aims. Firstly, to provide a brief summary of the relationship between persistent pain and suicide risk, as well as outlining some key issues associated with the assessment of this clinical need. Secondly, the article examines a collection of practical suggestions and best practices to aid interdisciplinary teams, that can be applied by any profession working with persistent pain.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
Specialist publicationPain and Rehabilitation: The Journal of the Physiotherapy Pain Association
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020


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