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Norfolk and Waveney handed extra money for suicide prevention

Mental health. Pictured: A young man experiencing depression sits by a window. Picture: Newscast Online

Mental health. Pictured: A young man experiencing depression sits by a window. Picture: Newscast Online

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Communities such as Norfolk and Waveney which are worst affected by suicide are being given funding to develop suicide prevention and reduction schemes.

The investment, announced this week by Department for Health and Social Care, Public Health England (PHE), and NHS England marks the start of a three-year programme worth £25m that will reach the whole country by 2021.

It forms part of the government’s commitment to reduce suicides in England by 10pc by 2021 and will support the zero suicide ambition for mental health inpatients announced by health secretary Jeremy Hunt in January this year.

One person every 90 minutes dies by suicide in the UK and approximately two thirds of these are not in contact with mental health services.

Jessica Stokes, health and wellbeing consultant at PHE East of England, said: “The prevention of suicide is a key issue locally and nationally. The effects of suicide can be far reaching and we know that some groups of people are more at risk of suicide than others.

“This funding will help build on the important work already taking place in areas such as Norfolk and Waveney to reduce the numbers of deaths by suicide.”

The funding, which has been allocated to eight areas with a high level of need, will help to ensure people know high quality confidential help is available within their community.

It will include targeted prevention campaigns for men, psychological support for people with financial difficulties, better care after discharge, and improved self-harm services for all ages.

The funds are set to improve suicide prevention strategies, signposting and raising awareness through to improving quality for safer services and will help drive better surveillance and collection of data on suicide, attempted suicide and self-harm.

The £25m national investment over three years is in addition to significant investment in mental health as part of the NHS’ Five Year Forward View for mental health to deliver accessible high quality care.

This includes expansion in crisis care for all ages, children and young people’s services and services for pregnant women and new mothers which should also support a reduction in suicides.


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