Suicide Rates Increasing In Southwest

St Mary's Hospital

There’s been a 24% rise in the number of suicides in the Southwestern counties, including Scilly and Cornwall, and NHS bosses have outlined plans to try to tackle the problem.

Latest figures released are for 2009 and show there were 515 deaths.

Men accounted for three-quarters of all suicides, most commonly by hanging and there is a clear link with deprivation. Suicide rates in the most deprived fifth of areas are more than twice the rate of the better off areas.

A report published today by the South West Public Health Observatory also found that there has been a large increase in the number of hospital admissions due to self-harm – 10,846 in 2009 – an increase of 73%.

This is the second highest percentage increase in England.

The fastest rise in self-harming was in girls aged 15 to 24 and the report’s authors are recommending social and coping skills for young people in schools.