Pediatric Research: Questions must be asked to reduce suicide risk

From the Dispatch:

There is a simple, one-question quiz that every physician, teacher, politician, parent, brother, sister and good friend should pass with flying colors.What is the No. 1 non-accidental cause of death in young people 10 to 34 years old?

The answer is suicide.

In fact, suicide claims more young people than cancer, diabetes, heart disease, cystic fibrosis, influenza, pneumonia and other infectious diseases combined.

One such questionnaire called Ask Suicide-Screening Questions, or ASQ, is made up of four quick, yes or no questions. Studies show that these can be effectively administered in a busy emergency department setting.

Why emergency departments? Research shows that 40 percent of people who commit suicide had visited an emergency department in the past year. And because that often is the only point of medical contact for some young people, it makes it the only chance we have to intervene.