Tailored Care: Why Different Models of Support are Vital for Suicide-Facing Cohorts

By Caroline Harroe (Harmless CEO)

At Harmless, we recognise that individuals facing suicide risk, self harm and suicide bereavement require different models of care to address their unique needs. While our services share the same underlying principles, the approaches and interventions vary to meet the specific requirements of each cohort. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind these differences and highlight the importance of tailoring support established on evidence-based practices and distinct client groups.

Understanding the Need for Different Models of Care
Suicide-facing cohorts, including those struggling with self harm, experiencing suicide crises or coping with the aftermath of suicide bereavement, require specialised approaches to address their specific challenges. These distinct client groups have diverse needs, experiences and risk factors that necessitate tailored interventions. By recognising these differences, we can ensure that our services are effective, targeted and responsive to the unique circumstances faced by each cohort.

Evidence-Based Practices and Differentiation
The interventions provided within each suicide-facing cohort are informed by a robust evidence base. Extensive research has demonstrated that tailored interventions lead to better outcomes for individuals at risk of self harm, in crisis, or affected by suicide bereavement. By utilising evidence-based practices, we can address the specific needs and risk factors associated with each cohort, optimising support and minimising harm.

Distinctions in Day-to-Day Work
The day-to-day work with each suicide-facing cohort varies significantly due to the specific focus of the interventions. Self harm services often prioritise harm reduction strategies, providing support to individuals struggling with developing resilience and emotional expression and developing alternative coping mechanisms. Suicide crisis interventions, on the other hand, focus on immediate risk assessment, safety planning and emotional support during times of acute distress. Suicide bereavement services centre around providing compassionate support to individuals who have lost a loved one to suicide, addressing their unique grief journey and facilitating healing.

Workload and Team Composition
The workload and team composition also differ across suicide-facing cohorts. Self harm services may require expertise in harm reduction techniques, crisis intervention and building therapeutic relationships. Suicide crisis interventions necessitate highly trained staff skilled in risk assessment, safety planning and crisis management. Suicide bereavement support requires professionals experienced in exposure to complex grief, trauma-informed care and providing a safe space for individuals to express their emotions.

The Importance of Tailored Care
Providing tailored care is essential for ensuring the best possible outcomes for individuals facing suicide risk, self harm and suicide bereavement. By recognising the unique needs and challenges of each cohort, we can offer interventions that address their specific circumstances effectively. Tailored care enhances engagement, promotes a sense of safety and increases the likelihood of positive change and recovery.

At Harmless, we firmly believe in the necessity of different models of care for suicide-facing cohorts. By tailoring our interventions based on evidence-based practices and the distinct needs of each group, we can provide targeted support that maximises positive outcomes. Our commitment to differentiated care ensures that individuals facing suicide risk, self harm and suicide bereavement receive the specialised support they require on their journey toward healing, recovery and resilience. Together, we can make a significant impact in reducing suicide rates and supporting those affected by suicide in their path to well-being.