CAMS-care Suicide Risk Assessment & Prevention Training Framework
David Jobes began his career in 1987 in the Counseling Center of The Catholic University of America where he endeavored to develop a valid and reliable suicide risk assessment tool and tracking method to ensure that the university’s suicidal students didn’t “fall through the cracks.” This line of clinical research over 30 years led to the development of the Suicide Status Form (SSF) and subsequent development of the Collaborative Assessment and Management of Suicidality.
For over 25 years, David Jobes has trained thousands of mental health professionals in the assessment of suicide risk and the use of CAMS.
“My mother took her life when I was thirteen years old. I believe that if a mental health provider trained in CAMS had worked with her, my mother’s life could have been saved.”
Here is what we have learned from live training:
- While evaluations from live didactic training in CAMS are usually very high, overwhelmingly such training does not lead to clinicians changing their behaviors. This observation is often true for many types of didactic clinical practice training. To save lives, clinical behaviors have to change.
- Integrated training in content, role-playing, and clinical consultation is required to effectively change clinical behaviors. CAMS-care endeavors to provide adherent training to every mental health professional–and systems of care–seeking an evidence-based approach to suicidal risk. We have used the CAMS Integrated Training approach since the Fall of 2016 based on the best selling second edition of Managing Suicidal Risk: A Collaborative Approach.
Our mission is to research, train, consult, develop technology, and provide cutting-edge leadership and related professional services in an evidence-based approach for suicide prevention in clinical settings and larger health care systems.
Our Motto: Best Possible Care
We believe to save lives every patient deserves to receive the Best Possible Care that is evidence-based and suicide-specific. CAMS is not the only evidence-based “Best Possible Care” for the assessment and treatment of suicidal risk. There are other excellent treatments that also effectively treat suicide risk: Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) and two forms of suicide-specific cognitive-behavioral therapy: Cognitive Therapy for Suicide Prevention (CT-SP) and Brief Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (BCBT). Whatever treatment approach a mental health professional chooses to follow, it is critical that the treatment specifically treats suicidality and is proven effective through randomized clinical trial research and research replication. Although there are many well-intended clinical interventions for suicide available, unless they are based on a foundation of randomized controlled trials and replication, it is unknown if they are effective for managing and treating suicide risk, particularly across a wide range of patients and clinical settings. Given the life and death implications, every patient (and their family) deserves to receive the Best Possible Care that is suicide-specific.