Victoria’s 10-Year Mental Health Plan Launched

Minister for Mental Health Victoria, statement 27 November 2015
* Government releases 10 Year Mental Health Plan for Victoria
* Priorities include suicide prevention, Aboriginal well-being and a workforce strategy
* Plan focuses on prevention, with nearly half of all Victorians experiencing mental illness in their lifetime
Find statement here and plan here.

Black Dog Institute suicide attempt study finds that patients get no follow-up

SMH, 3 September 2015
Author: Amy Corderoy
“A report released on Thursday shows that many people who try to harm or kill themselves are being failed by a healthcare system experts say is full of cracks left by overstretched hospitals and a shortage of community care. The new analysis from the Black Dog Institute and the NHMRC Centre for Research Excellence in Suicide Prevention found that 37 per cent of the tens of thousands of people hospitalised for their injuries were never admitted for psychiatric care or given follow-up psychiatric treatment in the community.”
Find article here.

South Korea: Suicide Nation

Aljazeera, 27 August 2015
Source: Al Jazeera
“In South Korea, suicide has become the fourth most common cause of death, with up to 40 of its citizens taking their own lives every day. For the last eight years it has had the highest suicide rates in the industrialised world (and the second highest in the whole world behind Guyana) and it is now, astonishingly the number one cause of death for its citizens between the ages of 10 and 30.”
Find article here.

Gun Laws Associated With Lower Suicide Rates

NYT, 19 August 2015
Author: Nicholas Bakalar
“A new study has found that four gun laws are significantly associated with lower rates of firearm suicide.
Researchers gathered data on the presence or absence of four firearm laws in each state: waiting periods for gun purchases, background checks for purchase or licensing, hand gun locks, and restrictions on the open carrying of handguns. Then they collected the data on gun suicide rates in each state. The study is in The American Journal of Public Health, found that each of the four laws was associated with a lower rate of suicide by gun as well as a lower overall rate of suicide.”
Find article here.

Discrimination against people with hepatitis B in China

The Lancet, 386(9990), p245–246, 18 July 2015
Authors: Quancheng Kan, Jianguo Wen, Rui Xue
“In April, 2015, a student from Tianjin Normal University, Tianjin City, China, died by suicide in her school dormitory 4 months after her diagnosis with hepatitis B virus (HBV). This incident caused wide public concern about discrimination against people with HBV in China. A recent publication showed that there are about 100 million HBV carriers in China. Poor understanding of HBV and its transmission persist, even among carriers of HBV. The dangers of HBV are overestimated, and many believe that HBV can be transmitted through contacts and eating together. In the last month of this student’s life, the university arranged for her to live in a single room instead of to share a dormitory with other students. Ultimately, fear and prejudice against carriers of HBV led to her death.”
Find article here.

Indigenous suicide rate 12th highest in the world

SMH, 10 July 2015
Authors: Inga Ting, Fergus Hunter
“Indigenous Australia would have the 12th-highest suicide rate globally if it was ranked alongside the world’s sovereign states. About 560 Indigenous Australians of all ages died by suicide between 2008 and 2012, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s 2015 report on Indigenous health and welfare, released last month.”
Find article here.

Men more likely to talk about suicidal thoughts with loved ones than doctor

ABC, 25 June 2015
Author: Adrienne Francis
“A national study has found men are more likely to discuss suicidal thinking with trusted acquaintances like family, friends or partners than health clinicians. The research by not-for-profit the Black Dog Institute aims to identify ways to prevent male suicides, which account for about 75 per cent of the total Australian figure.”
Find article here.

Childhood Bullying Linked Strongly To Adult Depression, Study Finds

Forbes, 3 June 2015
Author: Alice G. Walton
“In recent years, bullying has come into the spotlight as a major contributor to mental health problems in young people. According to up to 28% of kids aged 6-12 have experienced bullying, and 20% of high school students have. A new study tells us more about the connection between childhood bullying and early adulthood depression. And the one seems to contribute significantly to the other.”
Find article here.

Mental health: Why suicide prevention is everybody’s responsibility

SMH, 25 April 2015
Author: Amy Corderoy
“Despite widespread concern, the causes of suicide often can’t simply be cured by a doctor’s care or the right medication. The healthcare system experienced by Australians with a mental, rather than physical, illness is very different. Last week the National Mental Health Commission released a massive review of our mental health system, which recommended a goal be set to reduce the suicide rate by 50 per cent over the next decade.”
Find article here.

HMAS Stirling: Navy urged to tackle ice problem after spate of suicides linked to WA training base

ABC, 8 April 2015
Author: Louise Milligan
“The Royal Australian Navy is being urged to change its policies after an ABC investigation revealed a disturbing spate of suicides involving sailors from the Navy base HMAS Stirling. At least six current or former serving sailors have died in just two years, five from suicide and one from an apparent drug overdose.”
Find article here.