World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

UN Calls For Greater Efforts To Tackle Suicide


On World Mental Health Day, UN Calls For Greater Efforts To Tackle Suicide

With at least 870,000 people killing themselves each year and 450 million others around the world affected by mental, neurological or behavioural problems at any given time, the United Nations today marked World Mental Health Day with calls for greater attention to be afforded to the causes and treatment of suicide.

“We are all deeply concerned, and rightly so, about deaths resulting from wars, homicide, terrorism and other forms of violence,” Secretary-General Kofi Annan said in a message. “Yet, deaths due to suicide, and the factors that can lead to it, do not receive nearly enough attention.

“There are about 1 million self-inflicted deaths each year. If we add to that the many attempted suicides, we can see the real scale of this public health problem and human tragedy – one which affects tens of millions of people,” he added.

Although one of the most important risk factors for suicide is the presence of a mental disorder, such as depression or schizophrenia, and there are efficient and affordable ways of dealing with these disorders, not everybody in need has access to treatment, he noted.

“Left untreated, mental illness can be fatal. One of the best ways of reducing the disastrous impact of suicide is to tackle, in a community environment, the mental disorders that are linked so closely to it,” Mr. Annan said.

Joining its voice to the appeal, the UN World Health Organization (<"http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2006/pr53/en/index.html">WHO) noted that an estimated 873,000 people commit suicide every year, with suicide in some regions, constituting the third leading cause of death in the age group 15-35 years. Suicide is the leading cause of death for this age group in China and the second in the European region.

“All too often, suicide represents a tragic consequence of failing to diagnose and treat serious mental illness,” Acting WHO Director-General Anders Nordström said. “It requires a concerted public health response globally, nationally, and also from communities and families, to reduce suicide by reducing mental illness.”

WHO underscored the “huge gaps” in treatment and resources and called for mental health policy, plans and legislation to be integrated into national health systems.

“More than 90 per cent of all cases of suicide are associated with mental disorders such as depression, schizophrenia and alcoholism,” Director of WHO’s Department of Mental Health Benedetto Saraceno said. “Therefore, reducing the global suicide rate means effectively addressing the serious and growing burden of mental illness around the world.”

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Timor-Leste: UN Agencies Support Response In Wake Of Deadly Floods

United Nations agencies in Timor-Leste are supporting response efforts, as floods and landslides left widespread damage across the country, including in the capital, Dili. According to media reports, at least 21 people died in the country and many ... More>>

Myanmar: Stop ‘Widespread Violence’ Against Children, UN Officials Urge

Senior United Nations officials on Thursday strongly condemned the ongoing violence by Myanmar’s security forces against civilians, including children, as the members of the Security Council expressed alarm at the rapidly deteriorating situation in ... More>>

COVID-19 Origins Report Inconclusive: We Must ‘Leave No Stone Unturned’ – WHO Chief

The report from a team of international scientists assembled by the World Health Organization (WHO) to examine how COVID-19 first spread to humans was published on Tuesday, and was described by the UN health agency’s chief as a welcome start, ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs


Department Of Global Communications: UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ Message For World Health Day 2021

5 APRIL 2021 As COVID-19 Reveals Immoral Inequities in Health System, Secretary-General Observance Message Calls for Applying Policies, Assigning Resources to Ensure Everyone Thrives Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message for World ... More>>


Global Development: Responding To COVID-19 Pandemic, Young People Advocate For Bold Solutions

From climate action to addressing inequalities and building peace, youth leaders scale up efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals 7 to 8 April 2021 Follow on UN Web TV Youth leaders, activists and youth-led organizations around the world ... More>>

SDG Action Awards: Winners Announced

Mobilizing, inspiring, and connecting individuals around the globe to #TurnItAround for people and planet Bonn, Germany, 25 March - The 2020 SDG Action Awards Ceremony, which took place on 25 March as a part of the fifth SDG Global Festival of Action ... More>>