Suicide an Alarming Need to Go Beyond Medication - An Exploration of Primary Care Scenario
Background: In the current globalized, technologically advanced society, suicide is one of the serious public health issues. The health system has an important role in assessing and preventing the suicidal act. General practitioners are the first contact for the community to seek health care. The aim of the study is to explore knowledge of general practitioners’ regarding suicide prevention and the extent of risk assessment and management in the primary health care setting. Methods: Twelve in-depth interviews were conducted among general practitioners working in the primary health care setup both the public and private sectors in Urban Bangalore, Karnataka. A qualitative research design was adopted. Data was analyzed using thematic analysis approach. Results: This study reveals the general practitioners who are working in the primary health care set up, had inadequate knowledge about the causation of suicide, warning signs, risk and protective factors of suicide and also lacked skills in risk assessment and prevention strategies in the primary health care set up. Conclusion: Viewing suicide as a public health issue, it is very important to relate to the primary health care set up –where; people directly coming, approaching and being in contact with the health care system. The study indicates to focus psycho-social aspect with the medical management of the suicidal behaviour and also highlights the importance of risk assessment of suicidal behaviour in the primary health care setup by enhancing the knowledge of general practitioners regarding suicide prevention in a bio-psycho-social framework.
Keywords: General practitioner, knowledge, suicide prevention
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