Addressing Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors in Substance Abuse Treatment (7 CE)
Course Level: Intermediate
Course By: Alden Hori, PhD
Dr. Hori earned a PhD in psychology from the University of California at Riverside. He was an Associate-In Professor and Research Assistant at the University of California at Riverside, where he supervised the completion of over 50 research projects in psychology. He is credited with three publications in peer-reviewed journals.
Content By: This publication was developed under the Knowledge Application Program (KAP) with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Christina Currier served as the Government Project Officer.
Course Delivery: Online, Self-Paced
Course Description: This course provides guidelines to help substance abuse treatment counselors work with suicidal adult clients. It covers risk factors and warning signs for suicide, core counselor competencies, clinical vignettes, and information for administrators and clinical supervisors.
1. Background Information – Link between Substance Abuse and Suicidality
- Introduce GATE model
- Competencies for addressing suicidal thoughts and behaviors with clients in substance abuse treatment
2. Application of GATE model in substance abuse treatment settings
- Six clinical vignettes
3. Administrative response to suicidality in substance abuse treatment settings
- Benefits of addressing suicidality
- Should administrators be involved in clinical issues?
- Level of program involvement
- Role of administrators and mid-level staff in implementing programs
- Legal and ethical issues in addressing suicidality in substance abuse programs
4. Building a suicide prevention- and intervention-capable agency
- Organizational assessment
- Organizational planning
- Program implementation
- Helping your program improve capabilities in working with clients who are suicidal
- Helping your agency develop and improve its response to suicidal crises
- Delineate suggestions for addressing suicidal thoughts and behaviors, along with points to keep therapists on track and positive attitudes and behaviors that will help therapists provide services to clients who are suicidal
- Summarize background information about suicide and substance use disorders, including risk factors and warning signs for suicide
- Evaluate a four-step process for addressing suicidal thoughts and behaviors in substance abuse treatment, summarized by the acronym GATE (Gather information, Access supervision, Take responsible action, and Extend the action)
- Evaluate vignettes of counseling sessions with clients who have suicidal thoughts and behaviors
- Evaluate master clinician notes and comments that help therapists understand the client, his or her issues related to suicide, and approaches therapists can take in their counseling work with clients with suicidal thoughts and behaviors
- Summarize benefits of addressing suicidality in substance abuse treatment programs
- Evaluate different levels of program involvement in addressing the needs of substance abuse clients with suicidal thoughts and behaviors
- Evaluate legal and ethical issues for consideration in managing and providing treatment to clients with suicidal thoughts and behaviors
Course materials can be downloaded or read online. To receive a certificate of completion, you must complete an online multiple-choice post-test with a score of 75% or better and complete an online course evaluation.