Study About Treatment After a Suicide Attempt

  • End date
    Feb 28, 2025
  • participants needed
  • sponsor
    University of Rochester
Updated on 4 April 2023
intervention program
suicide prevention


Effective, brief, low-cost interventions for individuals who attempt suicide are needed to save lives and achieve the goals of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention. In response to a National Institute for Mental Health (NIMH) Notice of Interest, this time-sensitive proposal leverages an existing federal investment in Zero Suicide to test the effectiveness of a highly promising new treatment for recent suicide attempt survivors and learn how it works. If hypotheses are supported, the study will provide evidence of a brief, practical, and cost-effective therapy that reduces suicide reattempts in a real-world health setting.


Suicide rates are rising in the US and more than a million Americans try to take their own lives each year. Effective, brief, low-cost interventions for individuals who attempt suicide are essential to saving lives and achieving the goals of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention. This study takes advantage of a time-sensitive research opportunity to test the effectiveness of the Attempted Suicide Short Intervention Program (ASSIP), a manualized 3-session intervention for recent suicide attempt survivors that produced dramatic reductions in suicide attempts in a efficacy trial-80% fewer reattempts and an average of 72% fewer hospital days over 24 months in the intervention group compared to controls. This research will now test its effectiveness of in the US public mental health care system, examine theoretically grounded mechanisms, and explore cost-effectiveness. ASSIP is currently being implemented by New York State in a Zero Suicide initiative funded by SAMHSA. Consistent with NIMH Notice of Interest MH-17-03, this project leverages this federal investment and a strong state partnership to conduct effectiveness research.

Effectiveness. The primary aim of this study is to determine the effectiveness of ASSIP in reducing suicide reattempts in a community mental health setting in the U.S. To accomplish this aim the investigators will conduct a randomized controlled trial with 400 individuals referred from psychiatric inpatient and emergency services following a suicide attempt. Participants will be randomized to receive either usual care + ASSIP (intervention arm) or usual care only (control arm), and followed for assessments at baseline, 6-weeks 3-, 6-, 12-, and 18-months.

Mechanism. The secondary aim of this study to examine the psychological mechanisms of ASSIP, as predicted by the Interpersonal Theory of Suicide. To accomplish this aim the investigators will conduct statistical analyses of a mediation model to determine (a) whether ASSIP improves perceptions of low belonging and being a burden on others, and (b) whether the effect of treatment on reductions in suicide re-attempts is mediated by these improvements.

Cost-Effectiveness. The exploratory aim is to identify potential implementation costs, barriers, and facilitators for delivering ASSIP. A stakeholder summary report will be written and disseminated, including an estimate, from the perspective of an ASSIP provider, the incremental cost per suicide attempt averted by delivering ASSIP to supplement usual care following a suicide attempt. This report can be used by organizations and localities considering implementing ASSIP as part of their Zero Suicide strategy.

Condition Suicide, Attempted
Treatment Attempted Suicide Short Intervention Program, Zero Suicide Usual Care
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT03894462
SponsorUniversity of Rochester
Last Modified on4 April 2023


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

18 years or older
Suicide attempt within the past 60 days defined by intent to die using a standard item
Ability and willingness to provide information and permission to contact at least one person in the case of a need to contact them to promote subject safety or inability to reach the subject for follow-up

Exclusion Criteria

Acute psychiatric instability (e.g., psychotic symptoms)
Inability to communicate in English (ASSIP is only provided by the clinic in English)
Residing outside of NYS (during the period eligible for ASSIP)
Clear my responses

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  • You can expect the study team to contact you via email or phone in the next few days.
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Additional screening procedures may be conducted by the study team before you can be confirmed eligible to participate.

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If you are confirmed eligible after full screening, you will be required to understand and sign the informed consent if you decide to enroll in the study. Once enrolled you may be asked to make scheduled visits over a period of time.

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Complete your scheduled study participation activities and then you are done. You may receive summary of study results if provided by the sponsor.

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