SMJ CME Feb 2017 SET A

Code SMJ201702A

Depression in primary care: assessing suicide risk

  • Answers will be published online in the SMJ April 2017 issue.
  • The MCR numbers of successful candidates will be posted online at the SMJ website by 31 March 2017.
  • Passing mark is 60%. No mark will be deducted for incorrect answers.
  • The SMJ editorial office will submit the list of successful candidates to the Singapore Medical Council.
  • One CME point is awarded for successful candidates.
  • Deadline for submission: (February 2017 SMJ 3B CME programme): 12 noon, 24 March 2017.


  • Full Name


    Email Address


    MCR Number


    Question 1. A large proportion of patients who commit suicide do not make contact with a primary care health provider within the three months preceding their deaths.
    True
    False

    Question 2. Patients who die from suicide are more likely to visit their psychiatrist than their primary health care practitioner.
    True
    False

    Question 3. There may be opportunities for primary care physicians to identify suicidal patients and possibly intervene.
    True
    False

    Question 4. Acknowledging and discussing suicide aggravates suicidal ideation rather than reducing it.
    True
    False

    Question 5. Asking about suicide may help the physician to identify a patient at high risk who needs urgent intervention, as well as uncover risk factors for suicide.
    True
    False

    Question 6. Some risk factors for suicide are amenable to intervention, whereas others are not.
    True
    False

    Question 7. One of the more widely used suicide assessment tools is the SAD PERSONS scale.
    True
    False

    Question 8. The SAD PERSONS scale acutely predicts suicidal behaviour.
    True
    False

    Question 9. Thorough documentation and communication of details is important to ensure adequate monitoring and the safety of the patient.
    True
    False

    Question 10. Having one or more previous suicide attempts is not a strong predictor of suicide risk.
    True
    False

    Question 11. Having pervasive thoughts of hopelessness has been identified as a very important risk factor.
    True
    False

    Question 12. Interventions should aim to strengthen protective factors such as strong interpersonal relationships.
    True
    False

    Question 13. Eliciting suicidal ideation requires a step-wise approach.
    True
    False

    Question 14. If there are no thoughts of self-harm, the patient is said to have active suicidal ideation.
    True
    False

    Question 15. The primary care physician should not ask further questions to look for behaviour that suggests intent or whether there is a specific plan to carry out a suicide.
    True
    False

    Question 16. All persons with clear-cut, active suicidal ideation should be sent to the designated hospital (Institute of Mental Health in the Singapore context) for urgent psychiatric care.
    True
    False

    Question 17. The practice of forming no-suicide contracts should be encouraged.
    True
    False

    Question 18. A holistic approach should be employed in assessing suicide.
    True
    False

    Question 19. All persons who are depressed or suicidal should not be connected to available community resources and crisis helplines.
    True
    False

    Question 20. Suicide risk assessment is a complex and challenging process that relies on effective communication, and it is an ongoing process for the depressed patient.
    True
    False

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