Kohlenberg and Elliott receive grant to study suicide attempts

Kohlenberg and Elliott receive grant to study suicide attempts

Barbara Kohlenberg, a professor in the Department of Psychiatry, and Marta Elliott, a professor in the Department of Sociology, have been awarded a more than $100,000, two-year grant to study suicide attempts.

The grant was awarded based on their submission of an epidemiologic-service research proposal titled, "Near-lethal Suicide Attempts: Analysis and Recommendations."

Kohlenberg and Elliott submitted their research proposal in response to a study request from the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services.

The study, which has been funded through the Trust Fund for Public Health at $126,185, will begin July 1.

Elliott is the principal investigator and Kohlenberg will serve as co-principal investigator. Mark Broadhead, and Melissa Piasecki, both of the School of Medicine's psychiatry department, will serve as the study's co-investigators.

"By interviewing survivors of near-lethal suicide attempts, and by comparing them with people whose attempts were unlikely to be fatal, we hope to learn more about the specific circumstances in which a suicide attempt results in death," says Kohlenberg.

The grant will fund a study into the causes of suicide among people age 18 and above in Northern Nevada and will constitute research on issues related to public health.

The study will ask patients who are being treated after having survived a suicide attempt to tell, in their own words, what led to the attempt.  Kohlenberg and Elliott argue that the narrative data will be a critically important supplement to what is already known and will greatly improve upon the ability to predict and prevent suicide.

Emily Wofford Cobb, public relations manager for the School of Medicine, can be reached at ecobb@medicine.nevada.edu.


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