News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Rural Networks Plan to Reduce Suicide Rates in Farmers

9 May 2013

Rural Networks Plan to Reduce Alarming Suicide Rates in Farmers

Rising pressures on farmers and alarming statistics that show depression is a real issue in rural communities has prompted rural organisations to get together to find real solutions.

A group of prominent rural networks have met to brainstorm on ways to promote farmer wellness. The group included Rural Women New Zealand, Federated Farmers, Dairy NZ, Dairy Women’s Network, Beef + Lamb NZ, AgResearch, Young Farmers, Rural Support Trusts, Farmsafe, Ministry for Primary Industries, New Zealand Rural General Practice Network, Rural Health Alliance Aotearoa New Zealand and FMG.

Several groups have committed policies and action plans on mental wellbeing and reducing farmer suicides, however the time has come to pool those resources and ideas into one holistic strategy that puts the farmer first.

The meeting highlighted the fact that the poorer outcomes in terms of mental health of people living in rural communities compared to urban centres in New Zealand is of major concern to the people living and working in those communities. Ministry of Health data shows the suicide rate for those living in rural areas is 16 per 100,000 people, compared to a rate of 11.2 per 100,000 people in urban areas.

The coalition wants to raise awareness of anxiety and depression in rural communities and to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness. Stigma is a serious issue and often prevents people seeking help when they need it.

It is expected that stronger connections and partnerships between the organisations will ensure better outcomes for those suffering from severe stress, anxiety, depression and suicide.

The downstream effects of anxiety and depression are numerous. Poorer decision making on farm, affecting animals and the whole farm system, must not be underrated. This often leads to poorer farm productivity and profitability. The most significant effect of course is on the family and those closest to the person affected.

The new coalition will explore the development of a Rural Health Policy, along the lines of the Australian framework.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Scoop Review Of Books: Worldly And Unworldly

"Being Magdalene" by Fleur Beale The situations shown in this youth novel are shocking, scary, and very moving as we experience Magdalene’s struggle to be a perfect girl as defined by the cruel and unreasonable leader of “The Children of the Faith”, as she moves reluctantly into young womanhood. More>>

Whistle Stop: Netball NZ To Implement New INF Rules

Netball New Zealand (NNZ) will implement the new Official Rules of Netball, as set down by the International Netball Federation (INF), from January 1, 2016. Key changes include the elimination of whistle following a goal, amendments to injury time and changes to setting a penalty. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Waiata Aroha

Vaughan Rapatahana on Chappy by Patricia Grace: With this eminently readable novel Patricia Grace returns to the full-length fiction stage after a hiatus of ten years. More>>

'Ithaca' At Q Theatre: Introducing NZ's World Class Cirque Troupe

NZ’s very own cirque troupe is set to become a household name with the premier of its adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey having secured a key season in Auckland. More>>

Music Awards: The Tuis Are Broody This Year

Topping off a sensationally eventful year both at home and internationally, Nelson born brother-sister duo Broods has taken home four Tuis from this year’s 50th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>


Sport: Richie McCaw Retires From Rugby

Richie McCaw has today confirmed he is hanging up his boots and retiring from professional rugby. The 34-year-old All Blacks captain and most capped All Black of all time has drawn the curtain on his stunning international career which started in Dublin 14 years ago, almost to the day, and ended in London last month when he hoisted the Webb Ellis Cup aloft for the second time. More>>


John McBeth: On Jonah Lomu

For many New Zealanders, the enormity of Jonah Lomu's reputation will have come as a surprise... His deeds were watched and enthused over by movie stars and musicians, politicians and superstars from other codes. He reached into the lives and homes of millions and mixed with famous people most New Zealanders would only have read about. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news