Year: 2016 Source: British Journal of General Practice.(2016). Published online 1 February 2016. SIEC No: 20160020

Suicide is a major public health issue. GPs are often on the front line in responding to a suicide. They are called on to support individuals and families in the aftermath of suicide yet there is a dearth of research, particularly from patientsÕ perspectives, on how to provide optimal care for those grieving a suicide in the primary care setting. Three major themes dominated: the need for acknowledgement , of the loss and of the lived life of the deceased; the role of stigma in the aftermath of the loss; and the need for proactive provision of direction and support during the grief journey. The GP was identified as ideally positioned in the community to cater for the needs of the bereaved. Suicide can result in prolonged, complex grief generating specific patient needs. Stigma may function as a barrier to help seeking. The GP should consider initiating contact with the bereaved. Recommendations have been made to support GPs in their care of the suicide bereaved.

Contact us for a copy of this article, or view online at