Introduction and Overview

The following resources are available to help providers screen and assess, design treatment protocol, prescribe medication and provide referrals for children and adolescents at risk for suicide.

Screening & Assessment

Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSR)Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS)

The C-SSRS is designed for professionals to assess suicide risk, with several versions tailored to varied settings or populations.


ASQ NIMH Suicide Screening ToolNational Institute of Mental Health Ask Suicide-Screening Tool (ASQ)

The ASQ is a suicide screening tool for use among both youth and adults. All toolkit materials are available on the NIMH website.



Popular patient depression questionnaire. Modified for Adolescents (PHQ-A), Modified for Teens.


Patient Safety Screener (PSS)Patient Safety Screener (PSS)

Is designed to screen for non-negligible risk and provide initial stratification for those with non-negligible risk into mild, moderate, or high risk.



There are two proven types of psychotherapies Cognitive Behavior Therapy(CBT)  and Dialectical Behavior Therapy(DBT)

Referral and Co-Management

N/A for this topic


Clozapine is the only FDA approved medication for suicidal risk reduction


N/A for this topic

Additional Resources

National Institute of Mental Health: The lead federal agency for research on mental disorders.

Teen Suicides: What are the Risk Factors? Child Mind Institute reviews common risk and protective factors related to youth suicide.

Which Kids are at Highest Risk for Suicide? Healthy Children review risk factors for suicide in children.

How to Deal with Suicide: Crisis Text Line provides an updated take on common warning signs, risk factors, and prevention ideas for youth suicide.

Printable Suicide Safety Plan: A fill-in-the-blank template for developing a safety plan with warning signs, supportive people, distractions, and professional help for someone in crisis.

Blog by Dr. John Sommers-Flanagan: Current research, training resources, and clinical techniques for supporting a person who is experiencing suicidal ideation.

Montana Kid’s Count brief Suicide: Guns Matter

Youth Suicide Warning Signs: Provides a short and simple overview of suicide warning signs and the next steps.

Suicide Rising Across the US: The Center for Disease Control’s vital signs suicide overview.

Ask the Pediatrician: What should I do if my child is thinking about suicide? Would you know if your child had suicidal thoughts or feelings? One study found nearly half of all parents whose teens had thoughts of suicide were not aware. May Lau, MD, MPH, FAAP, discusses suicidal ideation, why it is important to talk with your child about their mental health, and when and how to get help.

Evaluating Iatrogenic Risk of Youth Suicide Screening: A randomized control trial.

Universal pediatric suicide risk screening in a health care system 90,000 patient encounters.

Screening pediatric medical patients for suicide risk: Is depression screening enough?

Why Does Montana Have Such a High Suicide Rate? Suffer Out Load, a Montana-based blog about mental illness offers a review of Montana’s most recent suicide report.

Middle School Suicides Reach an All-Time High: NPR Ed review of the increase in youth suicide.

The Relationship Between Bullying and Suicide: What We Know and What it Means for Schools: Center for Disease Control report about bullying prevention as a means of suicide prevention.

Nurses: The Importance of Screening: Video produced by Children’s Mercy Kansas City Hospital

Physicians: The Importance of Screening: Video featuring doctors Ted Abernathy and Scott Keel. Short version

Mayo Clinic: Youth Suicide Prevention: What to Say & Not to Say

Training and webinars offered for no cost. Intended audiences range from local, state, and tribal public health professionals; injury prevention specialists; law enforcement personnel and first responders; firearm safety advocates, depending on the training.

Northwest Center for Public Health Practice

New England Training Center

Stopping Suicide: A Population Health Approach to Preventing Suicide

Region V Public Health Training Center

Counseling Caregivers on restriction of access to lethal means

Suicide is preventable. Medication overdoses are too. Safer Communities Montana information postcard.

Locked and Unloaded Poster: Montana DPHHS graphic Means Matter!

Locked and Unloaded poster: Montana DPHHS graphic Means Matter! Same information, but a different layout.

Crisis Line-Life Line Business Card

Crisis Line-Life Line Poster