Root causes of self-harm must be tackled

Over 11,000 visits to hospitals last year were due to self-harming, a new report has shown.

According to the 12th Annual Report of the National Registry of Deliberate Self-Harm, in 2013, 11,061 presentations to hospitals were down to sell harm - a fall of 6% on the previous year.

Alcohol played a role in 40% of cases among males and 34% of cases among females.

The report noted that 61% of those who attended hospital were assessed by the mental health team and almost 70% of those discharged from Emergency Departments (EDs) were provided with a referral. However, this still leaves a significant number of patients who were not assessed or referred on.

According to Prof Ivan Perry, director of the National Registry of Deliberate Self-Harm, this issue is ‘an important barometer of the mental wellbeing of a community'.

"The rates of self-harm vary markedly and consistently in different parts of the country and are connected with deprivation and social exclusion. We need to continue to ask what we can do to tackle the root causes of these inequalities, most of which originate in early childhood," he commented.

The report was launched to coincide with World Mental Health Day (October 10).


[Posted: Thu 09/10/2014]


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