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National Suicide Prevention Strategy

Highlights of National Suicide Prevention Strategy India

  • It is a first of its kind in the country, with time-bound action plans and multi-sectoral collaborations to achieve reduction in suicide mortality by 10% by 2030.
    • It seeks to establish effective surveillance mechanisms for suicide within the next three years.
    • It establishes psychiatric outpatient departments that will provide suicide prevention services through the District Mental Health Programme in all districts within the next five years.
    • It seeks to integrate a mental well-being curriculum in all educational institutions within the next eight years.
    • It envisages developing guidelines for responsible media reporting of suicides, and restricting access to means of suicide.
  • Strategy is in line with the WHO’s South East-Asia Region Strategy for suicide prevention.
  • It aims to achieve SDG- 03: UN’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3.4 aims to reduce premature mortality from non-communicable diseases by one-third, through prevention and treatment, and promote mental health and well-being.
  • Objectives of WHO’s South East-Asia Region Strategy for suicide prevention:
    • To strengthen advocacy, effective leadership and governance for prevention of suicides.
    • To provide comprehensive, integrated and responsive mental health and social care services in community-based settings to address suicides.
    • To implement strategies for promotion of mental, social and physical health and well-being aimed at preventing suicides.
    • To strengthen information systems, evidence and research on suicide.

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National Suicide Prevention Strategy Need

  • According to recent National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) report, 1.64 lakh people died by suicide in 2021.
  • This is 10 per cent higher than the COVID deaths in India 2020, and 6.8 times the maternal death (23800) in 2020.
  • Causes for suicides: Family issues (33.2 per cent), unemployment/indebtedness/career problems (7.7 per cent), health concerns (18.6 per cent).
  • In India, suicide is the top killer in the 15-29 years category.
  • In the past three years, the suicide rate has increased from 10.2 to 11.3 per 1,00,000 population.


National Suicide Prevention Strategy 2022: Way Forward

  • Suicide is not an individual issue, but a social issue, and requires a psychosocial approach.
  • Suicides impact all sections of the society and thus require concerted and collaborative efforts from individuals and the community at large.
  • Sensitization: Healthcare workers, doctors, police, and the judiciary need to be sensitised. It will result in better care and empathetic conversations on suicide.

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