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The Vigilans device, available in France, an innovative device to support patients after a suicide attempt.

The Vigilans device

In France, there are nearly 20,000 suicide attempts per year. These tragic figures could be reduced thanks to the VIGILANS device.
This was created following field observations: after a suicide attempt and an often short stay in the emergency room or in the hospital, patients go back to their daily life without real support. A letter is generally then sent to the treating doctor or to the psychiatrist and an appointment is scheduled in a specialized centre, but the follow-up generally stops there.
Adequate coordination can improve the conditions of return to the home of the suicidal patient and prevent recurrences. This is the challenge of the VigilanS device tested at the end of January 2015 by the Lille University Hospital Center. This system centralizes and pools public and private hospital expertise plus SAMU and emergency actors in general. 

How the VigilanS device works

As part of the VigilanS system, after a suicide attempt, the services that took care of the person in the emergency, report it to VigilanS. At the same time, they give the patient a “prevention resource card” which includes a free emergency call number. VigilanS then informs the treating doctor and/or the patient’s referring psychiatrist by mail, of the implementation of the monitoring system. A referral number for health professionals (dedicated line) is then sent on this occasion.
The patient can, therefore, be contacted again. If it is a recurrence, the reminder will be made by phone or SMS after the patient’s discharge, otherwise by “post”. At each contact, the patient’s treating physician is informed of the contact via the VigilanS device. When a patient contacted is in difficulty or even in danger, VigilanS organizes appropriate remedies, in direct contact with the referral hospital and the attending physician.
The watch is carried out over a period of 6 months, which can be extended every 6 months, if necessary.

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