Addressing Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors in Substance Abuse Treatment (Updated) - Part 1

$40.00 | CE Hours:8.00 | Intermediate

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CE Course Description

Suicide is a leading cause of death among people who abuse alcohol and drugs.  This CE course presents the “what” and “why” of working with clients with substance use disorders who have suicidal thoughts and/or behaviors.  In addition, numerous vignettes are given as examples.

Author:  Centers for Substance Abuse Treatment.  (2015).  Addressing Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors in Substance Abuse Treatment.  Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 50.  HHS Publication No. (SMA) 15-4381.  Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.


American Association of Suicidology.  (2006).  Assessment and management of suicide risk: Core competencies for mental health professionals.  Participant mannual.  Washington, DC: Education Development Center.

Bossarte, R. M., Simon, T. R., and Barker, L.  (2006).  Characteristics of homicide followed by suicide incidents in multiple states, 2003-04.  Injury Prevention, 12, ii33-ii38.

Gutheil, T. G., and Brodsky, A.  (2008).  Preventing boundary violations in clinical practice.  New York: Guildford Press.

Retrieved from:

CE Course Objectives

1.  List three actions that should be taken in order to prevent clients from being exposed to life-threatening situations and to prevent the counselor and agency from being exposed to legal risk of malpractice.

2.  Explain the most critical thing to remember about crisis phone calls.

3.  Deduce why people with substance use disorders who are in treatment are at especially high risk of suicidal behavior.

4.  Name the three items, at minimum, that should be included on a written safety card for all clients with suicidal risk.

5.  Identify the most potent risk factor for suicidal thoughts and behaviors.

6.  Describe circumstances during treatment that require access to immediate supervision or consultation.


CE Outline with Main Points

1.  Getting Ready to Address Suicidality

2.  Background Informaion

3.  GATE: Procedures for Substance Abuse Counselors

4.  Competencies

5.  Next Steps

6.  Vignettes



Social Work Approval

Social Work CE Credit for this course is offered with the following approvals. Many state boards of social work will accept the approvals listed. Provider Approvals by state and license type can be found here.

  • Quantum Units Education is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, CAMFT Provider #89970, to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEP. Quantum Units Education maintains responsibility for this program/course and its content.
  • Florida board for Social Workers CE Provider #50-8650 (Quantum 'immediately' reports CE Credits to Florida licensees) 
  • Illinois Department of Professional Regulation, License No. 159.001261 approved CE Sponsor
  • Ohio CSWMFTB #RCST091701 approved CE Provider
  • Texas Board of SWE #5070 approved CE Provider
  • ACE credit is offered for this course for social workers (followed by ACE approval statement that is currently on every ACE course page) Quantum Units Education, #1289, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Quantum Units Education maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 01/03/2020 – 01/03/2023.

To see other approvals in your state, see our state by state provider approval listings here.


Course Development: Each course is identified and reviewed by the appropriate Quantum Units Education consultant with professional and licensed expertise in the various disciplines we serve. Our professional consultants oversee course development to satisfy the needs of various professionals based on their board requirements, rate course degrees of difficulty and ensure the course content and exam questions are appropriate, relevant and comprehensive. See our professional staff and their bios here.

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Added On: 2019-08-20

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