Violence, Suicide, and Substance Abuse
The primary goals of Dr. Tardiff's research are:
1. To describe the epidemiology of violence and suicide in the general population and among psychiatric patients.
2. To determine how substance abuse, psychopathology and the environment act to produce violence and suicide.
3. To develop models of prediction of violence and suicide.
The overall goal is to develop strategies for prevention and intervention both at the level of the individual and in terms of public health policy.
Current projects include:
1. Studies using data from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of New York City and Census data analyze the distribution of homicides, suicides and accidents in New York City in regard to characteristics of victims including HIV seroprevalence, firearms, illicit drug use and socioeconomic factors in neighborhoods.
2. A study that involved structured interviews with over 700 patients admitted to the Payne Whitney Clinic determines how psychiatric illness is related to violence and suicide.
3. Fatal accidental drug overdoses are being studied using data from the medical examiner and the U.S. census. Particular attention has been paid to the interaction of cocaine, opiates and alcohol in these deaths.
4. Dr. Tardiff plans to expand his studies of homicide by studying perpetrators. Conversely, in his psychiatric patients he will study them as victims of violence. Studies of HIV infection in regard to violence, suicide and drug use are planned with the medical examiner. Dr. Tardiff anticipates that his work on violence and suicide will continue to have an impact on the evaluation and treatment of violent and suicidal patients as well as on social policy regarding violence, suicide, and drug abuse.