Rising Suicide: WHO says 700, 000 people take own lives yearly


The Country Representative, the World Health Organization (WHO) Dr Walter Kazadi Mulombo, has said that globally that it is estimated that over 700,000 people take their lives annually, adding that 77% of all global suicides occurred in low-and-middle-income countries. Mulombo said this in commemoration of the 2022 World Suicide Prevention Day. He commended the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire stakeholders for their commitment towards suicide prevention in Nigeria.

Also he lauded health experts for their efforts towards suicide prevention in the country. He called on individuals to play a role in supporting those experiencing a suicidal crisis or those bereaved by suicide whether as a member of society, saying, “We can all create hope through action and be the light”. He assured that, together, by raising awareness, reducing the stigma around suicide, and encouraging well-informed action, “we can reduce instances of suicide in our country and inadvertently around the world”. He noted that every year, the World Suicide Prevention Day is commemorated on September 10.

Mulombo who emphasised on the need to increase awareness that suicide is preventable, insists that suicide continues to remain a serious public health concern with a profound impact on all. This year’s theme is with the theme: “Creating hope through action”, the organisers said it intends to serve as a reminder that there is an alternative to suicide. Besides “the theme aspires to inspire confidence and light in all of us, aims to empower individuals to be in charge of their lives and value the one life they have. Creating hope through action highlights the importance of setting suicide prevention as a priority public health agenda by countries, particularly where access to mental health services and availability of evidence-based interventions are already low”, said the WHO chief.

He added, “For every suicide, there are likely 20 other people making a suicide attempt and many more have serious thoughts of suicide. “Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among 15–29-year-olds. “Every case of suicide is a tragedy that affects families, communities and entire country and it has long-lasting effects on the people left behind.

“Suicides are preventable with timely, evidence-based and often low-cost interventions. “For national responses to be effective, a comprehensive multi-sectoral suicide prevention strategy is needed. “In 2013, the World Health Assembly adopted the Mental Health Action Plan 2013 – 2020 and identified suicide prevention as an important priority for achieving the global target of reducing the rate of suicide in countries by 10% by 2020.


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