World Suicide Prevention Day

To coincide with World Suicide Prevention Day Dr Dave Prosser, consultant in general adult psychiatry, has been speaking out about the work happening across the county to prevent suicide. As part of the Trust's new prevention strategy, launched at the end of November 2013, it is now training not just its mental health staff but also those who work in the community, such as district nurses, to spot the signs.

 Speaking to the News & Star this week he said:

“If you look at the people who die by suicide, only about a third are under psychological services and a third have had contact with them in the past. That means a third have never had any contact with these services, so we can't just focus on people who are under mental health care as being at risk.

But he added that if the signs are picked up and people get help when they need it, there is real hope:

“From my perspective, as a psychiatrist, I am always struck by how people can have such awful experiences but then demonstrate such resilience, strength and ability to get better with appropriate help.

“I would encourage people to seek help at an early stage. The nature of mental illness is that you feel hopeless about the future. The illness changes your thoughts. We can help with that.”

You can view the Trust's Suicide Prevention Plan which was published in November 2013.