A suicide prevention contract is a contract that contains an agreement not to commit suicide. It is often used by medical professionals dealing with depressive clients. Typically, the client will be asked to agree to talk with the professional prior to carrying out any decision to commit suicide. Suicide prevention contracts have been described as a "widely used but overvalued clinical and risk-management technique." Indeed, it has been argued that such contracts "may in fact increase danger by providing psychiatrists with a false sense of security, thus decreasing their clinical vigilance." It has also been argued that such contracts can anger or inhibit the client and introduce coercion into therapy.
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- MC Miller, DG Jacobs (1998), Talisman or Taboo: The Controversy of the Suicide-Prevention Contract, Harvard Review of Psychiatry, http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/10673229809000314
- The “Suicide-Prevention Contract”: A Dangerous Myth, 38, Psychiatric News, July 18, 2003, pp. 3, http://www.pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/38/14/3.full
- LM Range, C Campbell, SH Kovac (2002), No-suicide contracts: An overview and recommendations, http://www.informaworld.com/index/713841885.pdf