• Fact Sheet
  • May 30, 2019

Care of the Pediatric Patient with Suicidal Ideation PLS Course Detail

Course description:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identified suicide as the second leading cause of death in both the 10- to 14-year-old age group and the 15- to 24-year-old group, second only to unintentional injury. Approximately two million adolescents attempt suicide each year. 

Children with suicide ideation can be identified in a variety of settings including emergency departments, outpatient clinics, school health offices or during admission to an acute care setting for another disorder. Suicidal ideation is defined as having thoughts of suicide that may range from a vague wish to die to a specific plan and intent.

Pediatric suicide is a serious health concern. By being familiar with warning signs, risk factors and screening tools, you can help ensure the interventions needed for the child and family are identified and provided.

Course Objectives

  • Outline the warning signs, risk factors and screening tools used to identify pediatric patients with suicidal ideation.
  • Summarize the strategies presented by the Joint Commission and The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to protect at-risk patients.
  • Describe three main concerns to assess when evaluating for medical stability in the patient with suicidal ideation.
  • Summarize management considerations specific to the patient with suicidal ideation cared for in the hospital setting, including safety measures, therapeutic communication, use of psychotropic medications and behavioral health resources.
  • Outline the options for disposition of the patient with suicidal ideation, including discharge, and the criteria and care considerations for each.
  • Outline patient and family care interventions when boarding a patient with suicidal ideation in the ED. 


Play the video below to review some alarming statistics.


Quick Facts: 

  • Approved for 0.9 CNE contact hours and 1 CRCE contact hour
  • Length of course is 54.6 minutes.
  • Appropriate for clinicians working in the ED, PICU and medical/surgical units
  • This course in the Behavioral Health library.

NOTE: This course is only available to staff at PLS Participating Hospitals through their Learning Management Systems. If you are interested, please check with your organization’s learning staff or contact Patty Kohn to learn more.