Standards for the assessment of suicide risk among callers to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline


(For resources, this is the publication date. For programs, this is the date posted.)


National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Developed by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, the Standards for the Assessment of Suicide Risk among Callers to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides crisis telephone workers with evidence-informed standards for assessing a person’s risk for suicide. The Standards include four core domains or principles: (1) suicidal desire, (2) suicidal capability, (3) suicidal intent, and (4) buffers (protective factors1). Research indicates that suicidal desire, capability and intent are separate but interrelated constructs. To help the telephone worker elicit risk, subcomponents of these domains are also described. The Standards set national guidelines for assessing suicide risk among callers to crisis lines, and may be applicable in some clinical settings as well.

Program Objectives:

Those who use the Standards will:
1.Increase their knowledge of factors pertinent to assessing the suicide risk of Lifeline callers.
2.Increase appropriate and direct inquiries of suicide risk among Lifeline callers.