Self-harm and Suicide Prevention Competence Framework
Welcome to the competence framework for self-harm and suicide prevention.
This site gives open access to the framework, including background documentation that explains how it was developed, what it contains, and how it can be used.
The framework describes the various activities that need to be brought together to support people who self-harm and/or are suicidal. It is not intended to prescribe what should be done, rather it makes suggestions about best practice in the light of our current knowledge of the effectiveness of approaches and interventions.
There are three parallel frameworks – which overlap in terms of content, but they have been separated because they describe work with different populations and in different contexts:
- working with children and young people (from 8 years upwards)
- working with adults and older adults (from 18 years upwards)
- working with the public (community and public health)
Each parallel framework has its own background document which:
- discusses challenges to working effectively with people who have self-harmed and/or are suicidal
- explains the principles that guided the development of the framework
- gives details of the framework itself, and
- considers the ways in which the framework can be applied.
The primary audience for this documentation will be clinicians, trainers, clinical managers and commissioners of services, but service users and carers may also find the documents useful. A separate guide written specifically for service users and carers describes the frameworks and outlines the care they can expect.
Click to access the background document for:
Click to access the background document for service users and carers:
Accessing and downloading the competences
There are two ways of accessing the competences:
1. You can download them from the map of competences (which you can access by clicking the mages below).
The maps set out the ‘architecture’ of each framework - the ways in which the competences relate to each other. Placing the cursor over any of the boxes in the map takes you to the competences, so to see the competences associated with a specific activity, just click on the relevant box.
2. If you want to see all the competences included in each domain of the map you can get “one-click’ access here:
Competences for work with children and young people
Competences for work with adults and older adults
Competences for working with the public (community and public health)
|Generic communication skills|
|Liaison with others||Liaison with others|
|Generic therapeutic competences||Generic therapeutic competences|
|Assessment, formulation, engagement and planning competences|
|Specialist assessments||Specialist assessments|
|Specific interventions||Specific interventions|
|Structured care and intervention|