Updated action plan to reduce suicide in Wales

Fresh plans to reduce suicide and self-harm have been launched by the Welsh Assembly Government following extensive consultation on a draft action plan published last year.

The national action plan, ‘Talk to Me’, aims to raise awareness of suicide and self-harm and encourage people to talk more about their problems to remove the stigma that is associated with emotional and mental health problems.

Launching the action plan Health and Social Services Minister Edwina Hart said: “It will take time to see significant reductions in rates of suicide and self-harm in Wales but by raising awareness of the support available and increasing training, we hope to reach those who may be most vulnerable to suicide and to encourage them to talk about their problems.

“Every suicide is a tragedy where a life and family member is lost, with a lasting effect on those left behind. We hope that this plan will make people feel more able to talk about their problems and ask for help, and that help will be more readily available.”

Bill Walden-Jones, Chief Executive of Welsh mental health charity Hafal, said: “Good quality mental health services are one of the most important priorities in reducing the rate of suicide.

“Our view is that the priority should be placed on people with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. The rate of suicide among people experiencing those illnesses is 10% and we need to put more resources towards services for these people who are at the higher risk.”

To read the report go to: http://wales.gov.uk/topics/health/improvement/mental/talk/?lang=en