Quality statement 5: Supporting people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide

Quality statement

People bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide are given information and offered tailored support.

Rationale

Children, young people and adults who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide are themselves at increased risk of suicide. Providing support after a suspected suicide can reduce this risk, especially when tailored to the person's needs. It is important to identify people who may need support as soon as possible so that they can be given practical information and access support if, and when, they need to.

Quality measures

Structure

a) Evidence of local arrangements to use rapid intelligence gathering to identify people who may be bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, data sharing agreements and reporting arrangements.

b) Evidence of local processes to give information to people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide and to ask if they need help.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, a local protocol.

c) Evidence of local services that can provide support to people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, service specifications and a local directory of information on the services available.

Process

a) Proportion of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide who are given information.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who are given information.

Denominator – the number of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, audit of case records.

b) Proportion of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide who are asked if they need help.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who are asked if they need help.

Denominator – the number of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, audit of case records.

c) Proportion of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide who access tailored support.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who access tailored support.

Denominator – the number of people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, monitoring information from local support services.

Outcome

a) Proportion of people bereaved or affected by a suicide who are satisfied with information and support.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who are satisfied with information and support.

Denominator – the number of people bereaved or affected by a suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, survey of people bereaved or affected by a suicide.

b) Number of suicides among people bereaved or affected by a suicide.

Data source: Local data collection, for example, rapid intelligence gathering.

What the quality statement means for different audiences

Multi-agency suicide prevention partnerships carry out rapid intelligence gathering to identify children, young people and adults who may be bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide. Partnerships ensure that coordinated processes are in place across partner organisations to provide information to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide, to ask them if they need additional help and to signpost them to support if needed.

Partnerships ensure that information and signposting to support is offered to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide as soon as possible and then at subsequent opportunities to ensure that people can access support when they need it.

Service providers (such as police, hospitals, ambulance services, prisons, general practices, funeral directors, coroners' offices, employers and education providers) ensure that processes are in place to provide information to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide (including health and care practitioners and first responders), to ask them if they need additional help and to signpost them to support if needed.

Providers ensure that information and signposting to support is offered to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide as soon as possible and then at other opportunities to ensure that people can access support when they need it.

Practitioners (such as police officers, GPs, nurses, paramedics, mental health practitioners, prison staff, funeral directors, coroner's office staff and human resource managers) provide information to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide, ask them if they need additional help and signpost them to support if needed. Practitioners who respond to a suspected suicide or provide support to people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide, are aware of how they can access support to help them cope, if they need it.

Commissioners (such as local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and NHS England) commission services that provide support after a suspected suicide with the capacity and skills to meet the needs of the local population, including children and young people. They also commission services that provide information to people who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide, ask them if they need additional help and signpost them to support if needed.

Children, young people and adults who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide are given practical information, such as an information booklet, and asked if they want any other help. If they do, they are put in touch with a support service.

Source guidance

Preventing suicide in community and custodial settings (2018) NICE guideline NG105, recommendation 1.8.2

Definitions of terms used in this quality statement

People bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide

Children, young people and adults who are bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide may include relatives, friends, classmates, colleagues, other prisoners or detainees, as well as first responders and other professionals who provided support.

[NICE's guideline on preventing suicide in community and custodial settings, recommendation 1.8.1]

Information

Practical information expressed in a sensitive way that helps people to cope and signposts to other services, such as Public Health England's Help is at hand guide.

[Expert opinion and NICE's guideline on preventing suicide in community and custodial settings, recommendation 1.8.2]

Tailored support

Support that is focused on the person's individual needs. As well as professional support, it could include:

[NICE's guideline on preventing suicide in community and custodial settings, recommendation 1.8.3]

Equality and diversity considerations

Information for people bereaved or affected by a suspected suicide should be in a format that suits the person's needs and preferences. It should be accessible to people who do not speak or read English, and it should be culturally appropriate. For people with additional needs related to a disability, impairment or sensory loss, information should be provided as set out in NHS England's Accessible Information Standard.

Services that provide support after a suspected suicide should ensure that staff have the skills and knowledge to support children and young people who are bereaved or affected. Services should also ensure that they provide support for people from black, Asian, other minority ethnic groups and people with religious beliefs in a culturally sensitive way.

Services that provide support after a suspected suicide should make reasonable adjustments to ensure that people with additional needs such as physical, sensory or learning disabilities, and people who do not speak or read English, or who have reduced communication skills, can use the service. People should have access to an interpreter (including British Sign Language) or advocate if needed.