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 Table of Contents  
LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 264-265

Envisaging WHO's multi-sectoral approach for the prevention of suicide


1 Vice-Principal Curriculum, Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission11-Sep-2019
Date of Decision30-Oct-2019
Date of Acceptance09-Dec-2019
Date of Web Publication28-Sep-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
Professor, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV) – Deemed to be University, Tiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpattu, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu - 603108
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_95_19

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Envisaging WHO's multi-sectoral approach for the prevention of suicide. Indian J Soc Psychiatry 2020;36:264-5

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Envisaging WHO's multi-sectoral approach for the prevention of suicide. Indian J Soc Psychiatry [serial online] 2020 [cited 2023 Feb 6];36:264-5. Available from: https://www.indjsp.org/text.asp?2020/36/3/264/296266



Sir,

Suicide has been acknowledged as a serious and major global public health concern, with close to four-fifth of the cases being reported in low- and middle-income nations and the rest from developed nations.[1],[2] The available estimates depict that each year almost 0.8 million people lose their lives due to suicide, which amounts to one death every 40 s in the real sense globally.[2],[3] At the same time, it is important to note that many more people attempt suicide due to various reasons each year and these estimates often go unrecorded due to weakness in the surveillance system.[1]

There's no denying that any death in a family is a disastrous event for the entire family, friends, and at the workplace, and if it is due to suicide, the magnitude of the impact becomes even more.[1] As a matter of fact, all such deaths are preventable and thus, there is an immense need to formulate and implement holistic and multisectoral prevention strategies.[3] Even though it has been acknowledged as an important concern, less than 40 nations have drafted the desired policies for the prevention and control of the problem.[2] This clearly shows that despite some progress, a lot more needs to be done by the national leaders and other concerned stakeholders.[2],[3]

The time has come when targeted measures should be taken at the population and individual level and this includes minimizing access to the various modes of suicide, school-level strategies for mental conditioning, strategies to facilitate early identification-treatment and care of people with mental/substance use disorders, training of paramedical workers to aid in the assessment and proper handling of suicidal behavior, use of media in a sensible way to report such incidents, and ensuring better follow-up care through community-based rehabilitation and support.[3],[4],[5],[6],[7] The implementation of these low-cost strategies in a time-bound manner is likely to show a positive impact in terms of reducing the incidence of these incidents.[3],[7]

Another important area of intervention will be to restrict access to pesticides, as they have been identified as the most common mode.[6] Some of the nations have banned specific pesticides and a definite decline in the incidence of suicides has been reported since then.[2],[6] In addition, there is an immense need to strengthen the surveillance mechanism, to enable timely registration of such incidents.[3] This will help the program managers to understand the epidemiological distribution and determinants so that evidence-based measures/strategies can be implemented.[3],[7] Further, measures have to be taken to improve the awareness level among the general population, so that the stigma and taboo associated with these incidents are eliminated forever.[1],[8]

In conclusion, suicide is a complex public health problem, which requires efforts from all the sectors for the containment of the problem. The need of the hour is to mount a comprehensive and integrated response, primarily focusing on the common predisposing factors to make a significant difference.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Suicide and mental illnesses: Bridging the existing gaps. Ann Indian Psychiatry 2019;3:68-9.  Back to cited text no. 1
  [Full text]  
2.
World Health Organization. Suicide – Key facts. World Health Organization; 2019. Available from: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/suicide [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 11].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
World Health Organization. Suicide: One Person Dies Every 40 Seconds. World Health Organization; 2019. Available from: https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/09-09-2019-suicide-one-person-dies-every-40- seconds. [Last accessed on 2019 Sep 11].  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Liu X, Huang Y, Liu Y. Prevalence, distribution, and associated factors of suicide attempts in young adolescents: School-based data from 40 low-income and middle-income countries. PLoS One 2018;13:e0207823.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Navin K, Kuppili PP, Menon V, Kattimani S. Suicide Prevention Strategies for General Hospital and Psychiatric Inpatients: A Narrative Review. Indian J Psychol Med 2019;41:403-12.  Back to cited text no. 5
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
6.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Limiting pesticide access to minimize suicide incidence. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2017;10:477.  Back to cited text no. 6
  [Full text]  
7.
McKean AJS, Bostwick JM. Epidemiology Needs to Inform Suicide Prevention Strategies. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 2019;58:919-20.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Anang P, Naujaat Elder EH, Gordon E, Gottlieb N, Bronson M. Building on strengths in Naujaat: The process of engaging Inuit youth in suicide prevention. Int J Circumpolar Health 2019;78:1508321.  Back to cited text no. 8
    




 

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