Suicide Recommendations Effective in Controlling Suicide Rates in England and Wales?
The suicide recommendations were made by the National Confidential Inquiry (NCI) into Suicide and Homicide during the 1990’s, with purpose of monitoring self-harm rates and enhance healthcare in the country. Their present study is focused on determining the effectiveness of new recommendations, whether it have an effect on lowering suicide rates.
All recommendations should include:
- A round-the-clock crisis management team
- Inpatient hospital care and confinement for suicidal persons
- A week-long follow-up for patients discharged from the hospital
- Community support for patients
- Cooperation with law enforcement and criminal justice agencies
- Multidisciplinary review and providing the victim’ family with information
- Clear policy for patients not complying with treatment
- Professional care for suicidal persons with mental health and addiction problems
- Removal of ligature points from wards
- Front-line staff should be given proper training for handling suicide cases
24-hour crisis center the most crucial
The study says that the more recommendations adopted, the lower the suicide rates were. The greatest factor is the presence of a 24-hour crisis care center – the initial base for controlling and reporting cases of suicide attempts. Before it was adopted, there were 11.4 suicide cases for every 10,000 patient contacts. This was lowered to just 9.3.
Another recommendation with the next greatest impact is the adoption of a multidisciplinary review. This enables the patient to be examined by several specialists, which is useful to determine presence of multiple disorders. It lowered rates from 11.6 to 10.5 per 10,000 contacts.
This shows that adopting several recommendations that cover areas like early detection, initial management and rehabilitation, mental health support and continuing support for suicide cases are effective in lowering suicide rates, especially among the most deprived catchment areas (which experience 10% reduction).
The study can be seen in the British medical journal The Lancet.
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