Challenges Associated with the Use of Policy to Identify and Manage Risk for Suicide and Interpersonal Violence Among Veterans and Other Americans

  • Robert M. Bossarte

In this issue, Swanson et al. (2018) presents findings from a study of more than 3000 U.S. veterans to describe associations between proxy indicators of need for fiduciary services and risk for suicide or interpersonal violence. The main objectives of this study were to evaluate the potential impact of current policies restricting access to firearms among Veterans determined to be incapable of responsibly managing their own finances and assess underlying assumptions about the associations between decision making as it relates to financial matters and increased risk for self-harm or interpersonal violence. The authors reported statistically significant increases in risk for thoughts of suicide and interpersonal violence associated with three proxy indicators of need for fiduciary services. Findings from this study raise several important questions about strategies for reducing rates of suicide among Veterans and members of other high-risk groups.

There is a recognized need for...



This project was supported, in part, by Grant #5R49CE001170 from the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, CDC, to the West Virginia University Injury Control Research Center directed by R. Bossarte.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

Dr. Bossarte declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Participants

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Injury Control Research CenterWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA
  2. 2.Department of Behavioral Medicine and PsychiatryWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA
  3. 3.Center of Excellence for Suicide PreventionCanandaigua VA Medical CenterCanandaiguaUSA

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