Introduction: Routine screening of adolescents for depression and suicide risk is now considered best clinical practice. However, due to a lack of training, many physicians do not engage in screening. The goal of this curriculum is to improve learner knowledge of and comfort in adolescent depression and suicide risk assessment and management. Methods: The didactic session typically takes 60-90 minutes to complete. In addition to a teaching PowerPoint that provides instruction in both the assessment and management of adolescent depression and suicide risk, the curriculum also includes a suicide assessment and management protocol. This protocol outlines an algorithm that assists in distinguishing between individuals at high and low risk of suicide. The algorithm enables clinicians to determine the most appropriate management plan based on the assessed level of suicide risk. Results: Outcome measures indicate that the majority of residents improved their self-perceived knowledge and comfort in assessing and managing depression and suicide risk, with an average of 61.7% of residents moving from the novice to the proficient group at the conclusion of the rotation. These results reflect learners obtaining 4 weeks of supervised clinical experience after the didactic session. Discussion: This curriculum was designed for use with pediatric and internal medicine–pediatric residents during their adolescent medicine rotation but could easily be adapted for use with other learners in different settings.

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Published in MedEdPORTAL, v. 12, 10361, p. 1-5.

© 2016 Stanley et al.

This is an open-access publication distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike license.

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