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Postvention interventions

Interventions are both individual (eg psychotherapy, pharmacological treatment) and community based (eg alcohol restriction policies, family outreach programs, gatekeeper training, education programs).48,49

Postvention interventions are intended to:

  • help the bereaved understand why the person suicided
  • support the bereaved through the grief process
  • identify those at risk of suicide, as well as prevent/recognise complicated grief, depressive syndromes and PTSD.25

There is no one-size-fits-all intervention or service that will benefit all suicide-bereaved individuals.46

Although monitoring for complicated grief, depression, PTSD and suicide risk factors is recommended, there is currently little evidence available regarding the effects of interventions after suicide.25,39,50


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  2. Wittouck C, Van Autreve S, Portzky G, van Heeringen K. A CBT-based psychoeducational intervention for suicide survivors: A cluster randomized controlled study. Crisis 2014;35(3):193–201.
  3. Jordan J, Feigelman W, McMenamy J, Mitchell A. Research on the needs of survivors. In: Jordan J, McIntosh J, editors. Grief after suicide: Understanding the consequences and caring for the survivors. New York: Routledge, 2011.
  4. Clifford AC, Doran CM, Tsey K. A systematic review of suicide prevention interventions targeting indigenous peoples in Australia, United States, Canada and New Zealand. BMC Public Health 2013;13:463.
  5. Coleman D, Del Quest A. Science from evaluation: Testing hypotheses about differential effects of three youth-focused suicide prevention trainings. Soc Work Public Health 2015;30(2):117–28.
  6. Forte AL, Hill M, Pazder R, Feudtner C. Bereavement care interventions: A systematic review. BMC Palliat Care 2004;3.


After suicide: A resource for GPs