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Crisis/Disaster Management for a Training Program

Physicians are all susceptible to the modern day realities of disaster preparedness and response. We work in hospitals where we plan for the unthinkable, the natural, and the unnatural. Still we find ourselves unprepared when that disaster is a physician suicide. Collectively, the authors have experience in managing these tragedies and hope to share the lessons learned with the medical community at large.

This guide outlines the basic phases and important steps to help manage crisis specifically related to physician suicide. We earnestly hope that no one needs to utilize the plan described but we understand the importance and necessity of preparing for the unimaginable. The following guideline can serve as a roadmap for response to a completed or incomplete suicide in a housestaff training program, medical school, or other medical community.

This strategic plan is divided into five parts, presented in chronological order. Together they represent our cumulative advice and best guidance. It should guide the unit (program, schools, and department) most acutely affected.



Lia S. Logio, MD, Vice Chair for Education and Program Director, Weill Cornell Medicine
Bethany Gentilesco, MD, Associate Program Director, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University
Dominick Tammaro, MD, Program Director, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University