Suicide in general practitioner’s narratives in Latvia

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


This study aims to understand the suicide narrative and its changes in social and professional habitats in the general physicians' (GPs) practice. The primary care plays an important role in recognizing the suicide ideation and preventing of suicide, since many patients have been seeing their GPs approximately a month prior to the suicide.The main goal of this research is to understand the GPs' individual perception of suicide in general, not on specific patient cases. The questions are constructed around the World Health Organization reference guidelines on suicide ideations' recognition and prevention. Specifically, the interviews aim at collecting field data providing answers to what extent GPs follow the guidelines in their proactive involvement and taking proactive measures for patients’ wellbeing. Additionally, GPs personal insights on the subject of suicide are also analyzed. In total 10 in-depth, semi-structured face to face interviews were conducted with GPs from all region in Latvia, using a snowballing approach. The interviews were recorded, transcribed verbatim, and the interview notes were analyzed, using a thematic approach. All GPs have recognized suicide as a serious national mental health issue, and their individual perception on suicide varies according to the personal experience, patients previous history with addictions and/or mental health issues. GPs attitude varies from patient to patient, which may influence the way they communicate with their patients. In some cases GPs blamed the persons who committed suicide because of the suicide bereavement on relatives. GPs in Latvia are the first responders to patients' mental health issues, and their attitude determines the provided care and interest in patients ongoing health issues. Given the influence of global pandemic on people's mental health, the GPs narrative on suicide call for more attention and needs to be revisited with a focus on the actions taken in order to prevent suicides.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 24 Mar 2021
EventRSU Research week 2021: Society. Health. Welfare - Rīga, Latvia
Duration: 24 Mar 202126 Mar 2021
Conference number: 8


ConferenceRSU Research week 2021: Society. Health. Welfare
Internet address

Field of Science*

  • 5.4 Sociology

Publication Type*

  • 3.4. Other publications in conference proceedings (including local)


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