We set out to ascertain how common this is for psychiatric trainees in South Thames and the effects it has, if any. An anonymous postal questionnaire was circulated to 400 trainees.
Of the 400 trainees, 203 (51%) responded and 109 (54%) of the respondents had had one or more patient suicide and 168 suicides were reported.We judged the effect of the suicide on the doctor to be moderate or severe in 126 (75%) of the 168 suicide events.
Patient suicide must have a higher profile in training. Formal systems need to be created to provide support and education in this area.
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