An important set of discussions grew from the workshop goals and was heavily emphasized at the meeting. Participants reviewed the classification instrument known as C-SSRS, the Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale, which does not have as its purpose the prediction of future suicide attempts or completed suicides but rather is used to systematically detect, or ascertain the occurrence of, and document events of suicidality as defined by C-CASA, which is discussed in Chapter 1. This subtly distinct focus allowed participants to emphasize the importance of capturing suicidal occurrence and non-suicidal occurrence. Elaborating on the specific goal of predicting suicidality, however, Gibbons asked whether suicidal ideation is an appropriate surrogate endpoint for suicidal behaviors and completion. “What information do we need,” he asked, “ … to determine whether or not suicidal thoughts, which are so ubiquitous among depressed people, are in fact good predictors of suicidal behavior and completion?”
Given the nature of the subject, it is important to remind readers that this workshop summary is a record of what occurred at the workshop. Many important discussions are needed in order to fully explore the statement of task, and while many of these issues were brought up and discussed, there are also a number that were not. This summary is by no means a complete review of the extent to which emergent suicidal ideation may or may not predict the occurrence of suicidal behavior. What is contained in this summary is a review of the presentations and discussions that took place during the workshop.