Chaplaincy Encounters Following a Suicide Attempt.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

This descriptive study examines the provision of chaplaincy services to veterans who sought health care at a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center following a suicide attempt. A system-wide VA database of suicidal behavior was used to identify a cohort of n = 22,701 veterans who survived a suicide attempt. Next, an electronic review of VA clinical records found that n = 7,447 (32.8%) received chaplaincy services in the 30 days following their attempt. Of this group, the overwhelming majority of first chaplaincy encounters took place in in-patient settings: n = 6890 (92.5%). First chaplaincy encounters most often occurred 1-7 days following the attempt: n = 5,033 (67.6%). Most chaplaincy service users had only one chaplaincy encounter: n = 3,514 (47.2%). The findings suggest that, at VA Medical Centers, a relatively sizeable percentage of suicide attempt survivors have contact with chaplaincy services. Additional research is needed to ascertain if chaplaincy services yield any therapeutic benefit for this group.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kopacz, MS; Kane, CP; Pigeon, WR; Nieuwsma, JA

Published Date

  • 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 23 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 167 - 173

PubMed ID

  • 28426335

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1528-6916

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/08854726.2017.1312813


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States