Research into suicide prevention

Suicidal behaviour is an extensive and complex social problem with a huge impact on those who attempt to commit suicide, and for their loved ones. Our goal is suicide prevention by ensuring that research results deliver real impact. This provides professionals, loved ones and suicidal individuals themselves the means they need to act on time.

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Second research agenda on Suicide prevention

Based on input from experts from the field, in the form of interviews and a meeting, and the evaluation of our Suicide prevention research programme, a second research agenda on suicide prevention has been drawn up. This ties in with the objectives of the National Agenda on Suicide Prevention 2021-2025

.  One priority formulated in the research agenda is that the knowledge generated must actually be implemented in practice. It is also important to focus on young people and middle aged men, in implementing suicide prevention.

Suicide prevention in young people

The research agenda reveals that there are still steps that need to be taken for the group of socially vulnerable young people in the field of suicide prevention. Young people who attempt to commit suicide are often in need of contact and proximity. Young people find it important for healthcare providers to not pass judgement on self-harming or suicidal behaviour. What they most need is understanding: what has happened to make you so desperate? This is the outcome of the study Als suïcide en suïcidale uitingen je dag kleuren: wat doet dat dan met jou en mij? (If suicide and suicidal expressions colour your day, what does it do to you and me?)

Suicide prevention in middle aged men

It is important that further research be conducted in what makes 40-70 year-old men so desperate that they see no other way out than suicide. Surviving relatives suggest that in many cases, they never saw it coming, while studying the specific case after the event often reveal clues that could have been better interpreted, and which could have provided grounds for treatment.

Network approach to suicide prevention

As a fellow in the Mental healthcare research programme, Derek de Beurs has conducted years of research into suicide prevention. He opted for a network approach: interaction between observable symptoms. Understanding the interaction between symptoms offers a different perspective on the occurrence and development of suicidal behaviour. In his final video portrait, he talks about the many factors that relate to suicidal thoughts and that develop in a complex relationship, over time.

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