1 After a Suicide | A Toolkit for Physician Residency/Fellowship Programs At a Glance In the event of a suicide within a physician residency or fellowship program, it is critical to have a plan of action already in place. This toolkit gives you a foundation for doing so. First and foremost, we encourage you to assemble a Crisis Response Team (pg. 6), and have provided a Crisis ResponseCommunication Plan (pg. 7). This toolkit also serves as a practical handbook to consult at the time a suicide death does occur. You will find guidance and step-by-step lists on how best to go about: • Gathering Information (pg. 7) • Communicating with the Deceased’s Emergency Contact (pg. 9) • Notifying the Community (pg. 11) • Helping Residents, As Well As Faculty and Staff, Cope (pgs. 16) • Dealing with the Practical Consequences on Schedules and Workflow (pg. 17) • Coordinating and Planning a Memorial (pg. 18) You will also find within the Appendix (pg. 22) immediately usable advice and checklists including Tips for Talking about Suicide (pg. 26); Sample Scripts to be Used in Face-to-Face Communication (pg. 29), and Sample Email Death Notifications (pg. 32); a Memorial Service Planning Checklist (pg. 36); a Sample Media Statement (pg.38); and Key Messages for the Media Spokesperson (pgs. 41). It is our hope that you will read through this toolkit before an event takes place. Whether or not you do so, this handbook can serve as a useful guide in the immediate aftermath of a suicide. * In this document the word ‘institution’ is used to mean employer of the deceased resident. The word ‘resident’ is used in the most inclusive sense to mean residents and fellows.