The base rates and factors associated with reported access to firearms in psychiatric inpatients

Bhanu Prakash Kolla, Stephen S. O'Connor, Timothy W. Lineberry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective: The aim of this study was to define whether specific patient demographic groups, diagnoses or other factors are associated with psychiatric inpatients reporting firearms access. Methods: A retrospective medical records review study was conducted using information on access to firearms from electronic medical records for all patients 16 years and older admitted between July 2007 and May 2008 at the Mayo Clinic Psychiatric Hospital in Rochester, MN. Data were obtained only on patients providing authorization for record review. Data were analyzed using univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses accounting for gender, diagnostic groups, comorbid substance use, history of suicide attempts and family history of suicide/suicide attempts. Results: Seventy-four percent (1169/1580) of patients provided research authorization. The ratio of men to women was identical in both research and nonresearch authorization groups. There were 14.6% of inpatients who reported firearms access. In univariate analysis, men were more likely (P<.0001) to report access than women, and a history of previous suicide attempt(s) was associated with decreased access (P = .02). Multiple logistic regression analyses controlling for other factors found females and patients with history of previous suicide attempt(s) less likely to report access, while patients with a family history of suicide or suicide attempts reported increased firearms access. Diagnostic groups were not associated with access on univariate or multiple logistic regression analyses. Conclusions: Men and inpatients with a family history of suicide/suicide attempts were more likely to report firearms access. Clinicians should develop standardized systems of identification of firearms access and provide guidance on removal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-196
Number of pages6
JournalGeneral Hospital Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2011


  • Access to means
  • Firearms
  • Inpatient psychiatry
  • Suicide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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