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Arch Suicide Res. 2019 Apr-Jun;23(2):179-202. doi: 10.1080/13811118.2018.1428704. Epub 2018 May 8.

Suicide Postvention for the United States Military: Literature Review, Conceptual Model, and Recommendations.


Suicide continues to be a significant public health problem in the United States and the Department of Defense (DoD). Timely and systematic postvention efforts can play an instrumental role in helping family members, peers, and military command to best manage the aftermath of a suicide. To date, several postvention efforts have been implemented in the military. However, there continues to be an overall lack of understanding of the specific short- and long-term effects of exposure to military suicide. In addition, more emphasis needs to be placed on empirically driven approaches to postvention and program evaluation. The purpose of this article is threefold: (1) to provide a summary of the postvention literature with special emphasis placed on the military organization; (2) to propose a conceptual model as a framework for understanding Military-Unit Suicide Survivorship; and (3) to briefly highlight postvention strategies within the DoD in the context of a number of research, clinical, and policy recommendations.


Bereavement; military; postvention; suicide; survivorship

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