Mental Health Negligence

Every 13 minutes a person dies of suicide in the U.S., and that rate appears to be climbing, now accounting for almost 40,000 deaths per year. Since 2010 deaths by suicide have exceeded deaths by auto accidents. The most common method of suicide is by firearm.

50% of these individuals are in psychiatric treatment at the time of their deaths. 10% are inpatients and 5-10% have recently been released from in-patient treatment.

When a loved one is in crisis we trust psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors and treatment facilities to assess their risk of self-harm and to treat them appropriately until they are well enough to resume their normal lives safely. Lack of training, medication mismanagement, inadequate supervision or improper diagnosis result in preventable suicides.

Failure to Prevent Suicide

Many people assume that a suicidal person can’t be stopped. However research shows that quality care given by well-trained professionals can prevent suicide. Studies on individuals who attempted to leap from the Golden Gate Bridge showed that overwhelmingly, those who were saved did not kill themselves at a later date, and, in fact, went on to live normal lives. Intervention is vital.

Suicide by In-patients

Patients already in a hospital should never be able to kill themselves. Approximately 6 patients per day commit suicide in U.S. hospitals. This should never happen. Staff are required to monitor patients continually and restrict their access to lethal means, such as bed-sheets, shoelaces, oxygen cords and open windows. Unfortunately, most hospitals simply check patients once every 15 minutes, leaving more than enough time for a distressed person to end their life.

Read Attorney Skip Simpson's viewpoint on taking on suicide cases in the book written by C.C. Risenhoover: "Suicide Lawyers: Exposing Lethal Secrets".

Simply put, don't leave these patients alone during the acute period of time.

Choose a Lawyer who Specializes in Psychological Negligence

McNamara Law Firm PLLC is Arizona's top psychological malpractice law firm. We specialize in litigating these complex cases. We bring compassion and integrity to every case we handle. We understand the trauma your family has experienced and we will do everything we can to hold negligent health care providers accountable. Contact our law offices today for a free consultation to see how we can help you. Call 520-624-0126 or reach us by completing the online contact form.