The clinical use of risk assessment

Can J Psychiatry. 2005 Jan;50(1):12-7. doi: 10.1177/070674370505000104.


In this paper, we argue that risk assessment should be considered a part of daily clinical psychiatric practice. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of various risk assessment procedures. In the event that a high risk for violence is present, we advise on strategies for discharging our duty to protect the public. Finally, by way of an illustrative case, we apply theory to practice and discuss the issues of risk management and risk reduction essential to a modern approach to psychiatry.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health Services
  • Psychiatry / methods*
  • Psychotic Disorders / prevention & control*
  • Psychotic Disorders / psychology*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Spouse Abuse / prevention & control*
  • Spouse Abuse / psychology*