Monday 19 March 2018

Suicide rate by girls here is highest in the EU

Tanya Ward, Chief Executive, Children's Rights Alliance
Tanya Ward, Chief Executive, Children's Rights Alliance

John Brennan

Ireland had the highest rate of female youth suicides, and the second highest rate of male youth suicides in the EU between 2009 and 2011, the Children's Rights Alliance report found.

It said it was a "stark reality" that one-third of LGBT young people have "seriously thought about ending their lives" and 20pc have attempted suicide.

The report reiterated concern about teenage suicide, particularly among boys, and the apparent link between underage substance abuse and the suicide rate.

It called for the new National Strategy to Reduce Suicide to be implemented in a standardised way.

The report also found that there were over 3,000 children on waiting lists to access mental health services across the country in May of this year.

This equated to an increase in referrals of 49pc between June 2014 and May 2015.

Of these, over 1,700 were on waiting lists for more than three months - while some 383 had been on waiting lists for over a year.

The report also found that 33pc of children admitted to "mental health facilities in 2014 were inappropriately admitted to adult in-patient units".

It recommends that "the State takes steps to end the practice of placing children in adult mental health facilities"

On top of this, it calls on the State to address the "unacceptable waiting lists" for children to access mental health services.


It also warned that healthcare in Ireland "is undermined by an entrenched two-tier system".

It said: "Indications of poorer health status among children from less well-off areas are obvious from a very early age.

"Compounding the problem of health status differentials is the fact that in Ireland access to healthcare is severely undermined by an entrenched two-tier healthcare system.

"Those on low incomes who are reliant on the public health system may have to wait for extended periods for tests and procedures, while those who can afford to purchase private health insurance, can receive a much faster service through the private system."

Irish Independent

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