Aeschi Working Group

Guidelines for Clinicians

The clinician's task is to reach, together with the patient, a shared understanding of the patient's suicidality.

  1. The clinician should be aware that most suicidal people suffer from a state of mental pain or anguish and a total loss of self-respect.
  2. The interviewer's attitude should be non-judgmental and supportive.
  3. The interview should start with the patient's self-narrative.
  4. The ultimate goal must be to engage the patient in a therapeutic relationship.
  5. We need new models to conceptualize suicidal behavior that provide a frame for the patient and clinician to reach a shared understanding of the patient's suicidality.

-Adapted from Meeting the Suicidal Person, The Therapeutic Approach,

Aeschi Working Group