UK report shows that 21 percent of suicides had been admitted to a psych facility

December 20, 2011

A FIFTH of people who took their own lives in 2009 had a psychiatric admission in the five-year period before they died, a report has revealed.

The report, the first from the new suicide information database, is based on the 760 deaths during 2009. It shows almost three-quarters were male and almost half were aged 35-54.

Among those of employment age 68% were working, representing a range of occupations.

Meanwhile, 21% had been a psychiatric inpatient at some point in the five years before they took their own life.

Alana Atkinson, programme manager for Choose Life, the NHS-led national strategy for suicide, said: "The report shows that the people who took their own lives came from every walk of life and only 20% had had a psychiatric admission in the five years before they died.

"This underlines the importance of raising awareness among the general public, that anyone can have suicidal thoughts at some point in their lives but everyone can help prevent suicide.

"Choose Life's message is: if you are worried that someone you know might be feeling suicidal, ask them about it and listen carefully to what they have to say. We know this can be the first step towards developing a sense of hope and could ultimately save someone's life."

The suicide information database was set up to provide more information about those who take their own lives.

Andrew Sim, director for Samaritans in Scotland, said: "The information contained in the report is of real value to all of us working to prevent suicide in Scotland. Linking data collected from a range of diverse organizations in this wayt has been a great achievement and the approach is one we would welcome across all UK nations."

Source: "Suicide report shows one in five people who take their life had psychiatric admission," Daily Record (Scotland), December 20, 2011.


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