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Working together to save lives

Every day is the right day to help a patient who might be at risk for suicide. As a provider, having available information and resources for you and your patients can be helpful to manage this complex issue.

Screening and assessment tools


Identifying suicide risk plays a significant role in preventing it. In fact, the greatest impact may come from screening patients who don’t present with obvious symptoms. So, consider providing a minimum risk assessment for all your patients whether there is a clear risk of self-harm or not. Then re-administer when it’s clinically appropriate.


The Patient Safety Screener (PSS-3)


This brief, well-tested and comprehensive tool can help you identify patients in the acute care setting who may be at risk of suicide. We use this as a universal screening tool.


Learn about PSS-3

Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS)


This gold standard of screening and assessment tools can be used in a variety of community and health care settings. It requires training and is widely used by providers.


Learn about C-SSRS

Helping patients make a prevention plan

Safety planning should be an ongoing intervention and conversation — from the first assessment through transitions of care and beyond discharge — not just filling out a form. Making a prevention plan together engages and empowers your patients by giving them a leading role in prevention.

Other important resources

It’s important to remember that the risk of suicide can increase significantly following an inpatient psychiatric stay or emergency department visit.


Simply reaching out to demonstrate care and concern following a suicide attempt can help reduce subsequent risk and reattempt.  Gentle reminders about appointments and access to care, along with encouragement and resources, help patients get necessary treatment and stay connected. 


You can access these resources to find the support you and your patients need.

Let your patients know they’re not alone

If you are having a mental health crisis or thoughts of suicide, free anonymous support is available 24/7.


Call 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, You can also start an online chat.


Text  HOME to 741741 to reach the Crisis Text Line.


Call 911 if you need medical attention or public safety assistance.

Legal notices

Aetna is the brand name used for products and services provided by one or more of the Aetna group of companies, including Aetna Life Insurance Company and its affiliates (Aetna).

Health benefits and health insurance plans contain exclusions and limitations.

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