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Ciência & Saúde Coletiva

Print version ISSN 1413-8123


CAVALCANTE, Fátima Gonçalves et al. Psychological and psychosocial autopsy on suicide among the elderly: a methodological approach. Ciênc. saúde coletiva [online]. 2012, vol.17, n.8, pp.2039-2052. ISSN 1413-8123.

The article analyzes the quality and consistency of a semi-structured interview script, adapted for the study on suicide among elderly people, and presents the psychological and psychosocial autopsy method, which is the result of application of this instrument. The objective is to demonstrate how the in-depth interview and subsequent data organization and analyses were tested and improved by a network of researchers from eight regions in Brazil. Evaluation of the method was conducted before and after the application of the instruments to collect, systematize and analyze the data. This methodology was applied in 51 cases of elderly people who committed suicide in ten Brazilian municipalities. The study did more than just collect data with scientific rigor, since it also verified the consistency of the instrument used and the applicability of the method. The improved script and the instructions of how to apply and analyze it are thus presented here. The results reveal the rigor and credibility of this methodological approach tested and qualified by a multidisciplinary and inter-institutional procedure.

Keywords : Psychological autopsy; Psychosocial autopsy; Suicide among the elderly; Rigor and quality of research instruments.

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