Funding to help prevent suicides

NEWS: News.
NEWS: News.

Health staff will be better equipped to help prevent suicide and support bereaved families thanks to £48,000 funding.

The money, provided by Derbyshire County Council, will help pay for a successful training programme, which has been found to help staff identify likely suicidal behaviour, prevent deaths and better support those affected, to continue until 2018.

The council has been co-ordinating local suicide prevention work since it took over responsibility for public health last year.

A key part of the work now underway across the county is to develop a local suicide prevention plan in partnership with other councils, health agencies and voluntary groups.

It will identify local problem areas to better target mental health improvement work, research and monitor trends and publicise

suicide prevention and support services.

There were 52 suicides in Derbyshire in 2012 (excluding Glossop and Derby city) with figures showing a small increase from 2008.

Of those the highest rate was among residents aged 70 to 79. This age group is particularly affected by social isolation, loneliness and bereavement.

Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Dave Allen said: “The factors that cause someone to contemplate suicide are varied and complex and the impact on family, friends and local communities can be devastating – but suicides can be prevented.

“Rates in Derbyshire are thankfully below the national average but in my opinion one death in this way is too many and we’re committed to supporting this important work to help us tackle the causes.”

Men are three times more likely than women to take their own lives and suicide is a significant cause of death among younger men. National research has shown a link between increasing suicide rates in areas with high debt and unemployment.