Geriatric Case Managers’ Perspectives on Suicide Among Community-Dwelling Older Adults

Karen Slovak, Natalie D. Pope, Thomas W. Brewer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


It has been suggested that clinical screening for suicide, along with firearm assessment and safety counseling, are important in service provision to older adults. It is unclear, however, how geriatric case managers respond to these issues. This study surveyed geriatric case managers (n=161) from Area Agencies on Aging in Ohio on their knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to suicide, firearm assessment, and safety counseling. Results indicated that the majority of respondents (70%) agree their clients are at risk for suicide. However, few (30%) in this study reported that they assess for firearms and less than half (48%) discuss firearms with their clients/family members when specifically assessing for suicide. Analyses identified barriers that contribute to the decreased likelihood that routine firearm assessment and safety counseling would occur, such as lack of training and time. Implications include the need for training with geriatric case managers that addresses barriers to suicide, firearm assessment and safety counseling as a means to decrease these population risks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-15
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Gerontological Social Work
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2016


  • aging
  • geriatric case managers
  • older adults
  • Suicide prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)


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