163: Using Artificial Intelligence in Suicide Risk Assessment w/ Dr. April Foreman and Dr. Tony Wood

Dr. Jeremy Sharp Podcast Leave a Comment

Are y’all ready for a barn burner of an episode? I hope so. Dr. April Foreman and Dr. Tony Wood are here talking all about their pioneering work in suicidology, particularly how they’re using artificial intelligence and algorithms to gather information from social media and predict suicide risk. The two of them have an infectious energy and a clear passion for this incredibly important topic, and both of these qualities are on full display during this episode. Here are just a few things that we discuss:

  • Artificial intelligence in this context of suicide research
  • The true impact of risk factors in suicide assessment
  • Ethics of AI research
  • Cultural differences in language that predicts
  • The possibility of uploading our consciousness at some point in the future

Cool Things Mentioned

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About Dr. April Foreman

April C. Foreman, Ph.D., is a Licensed Psychologist serving Veterans as the Deputy Director of the Veterans Crisis Line’s Innovations Hub. She is an Executive Committee member for the Board of the American Association of Suicidology, and has served VA as the 2017 Acting Director of Technology and Innovation for the Office of Suicide Prevention. She is a member of the team that launched OurDataHelps.org, a recognized innovation in data donation for ground breaking suicide research.

She is passionate about helping people with severe (sometimes lethal) emotional pain, and in particular advocates for people with Borderline Personality Disorder, which has one of the highest mortality rates of all mental illnesses. She is known for her work at the intersection of technology, social media, and mental health, with nationally recognized implementations of innovations in the use of technology and mood tracking. She is the 2015 recipient of the Roger J. Tierney Award for her work as a founder and moderator of the first sponsored regular mental health chat on Twitter, the weekly Suicide Prevention Social Media chat (#SPSM, sponsored by the American Association of Suicidology, AAS). Her dream is to use her unique skills and vision to build a mental health system effectively and elegantly designed to serve the people who need it.

About Dr. Tony Wood 

Anthony D. Wood, COO Qntfy, is Founder of #SPSM (Suicide Prevention and Social Media spsmchat.com) the largest and most engaged social media community dedicated to connecting Suicidologists, Crisis Preventionists, Researchers, Social Workers, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, MDs, People with Lived Experience of suicide, Data Scientists, Law Enforcement Officers, Teachers, and Students with the best and latest research related to Suicide and Crisis Prevention worldwide. His work with the social media aspects of Suicide Prevention as a founder of the Social Media Team at the American Association of Suicidology’s Annual Conference earned him the 2015 Roger J Tierney award for Innovation from AAS. His research on the intersection of social media and mental health has been published in AAS, ACM CHI, JSM and CLpsych. As a result of this work, he has become a sought after resource for mental health professionals, private companies and organizations interested in the intersection of new media, mobile data and Mental Health.

About Dr. Jeremy Sharp

I’m a licensed psychologist and Clinical Director at the Colorado Center for Assessment & Counseling, a private practice that I founded in 2009 and grew to include nine licensed clinicians, three clinicians in training, and a full administrative staff. I earned my undergraduate degree in Experimental Psychology from the University of South Carolina before getting my Master’s and PhD in Counseling Psychology from Colorado State University. These days, I specialize in psychological and neuropsychological evaluation with kids and adolescents.

As the host of the Testing Psychologist Podcast, I provide private practice consulting for psychologists and other mental health professionals who want to start or grow psychological testing services in their practices. I live in Fort Collins, Colorado with my wife (also a therapist) and two young kids.

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