Reaching out to men is crucial in suicide prevention

A report by Salford Now has revealed that Salford has a higher suicide rate than the rest of the UK on average.

The report also states that three-quarters of those affected are men. Now the borough’s Suicide Prevention Partnership is taking action to end that, according to Salford Now.

The most recent health profile released by Public Health England has revealed that Salford has a higher suicide rate than the UK average. Between August 2012 and July 2015 (the last on record) there were 81 instances of death by suicide in Salford at a local value of 13.1, considerably higher than the national average value of 10.1.

Latest reports also show that Salford ranks in the top 5 highest percentage in terms of depression and anxiety prevalence with 19%.

Proactively, Salford’s most influential groups and organisations have come together to form the Suicide Prevention Partnership. The collaboration’s aim is to reduce the number of victims in the city.

The organisation is made up of several different groups, including the Clinical Commissioning Group, Salford City Council, Salford Royal Hospital and Salford fire and police departments.

Judd Skelton chairs the Suicide Prevention Partnerships and he believes that reaching out to men and getting them talking would be a big step in the right direction.

“Nationally middle-aged men tend to be the highest [at risk] group. Men make up around three-quarters of the number of people who have died by suicide, and Salford is no different in that respect. That’s one of the key groups of people that we have identified that we need to reach out to.”

Mr Skelton also discussed the fact that the suicide rate is higher in Salford than the national average. However, said numbers are not a big concern and that the suicide prevention partnership is working to reduce them.

“We’re talking about relatively small numbers. 23 suicides last year in Salford, so it only takes two or three to move it up or down. Obviously, Salford is an area with significant health inequalities, significant socio-economic disadvantages and higher unemployment than some areas, all those are factors that could result in someone taking their own life.

“The aim that we have in Salford is the national target of 10% reduction and we will work towards that, but our overall approach is that 0 is what we want.”

TNT Health

Photo Credit: David Dixon

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