By Juliet Ebirim
The Suicide Research Prevention Initiative (SURPIN) has expressed worry over the increased rate of suicide cases in the country, calling for more proactive measures to checkmate it.
According to Dr Raphael Ogbolu, a consultant psychiatrist and coordinator of SURPIN, untreated clinical depression, financial and health challenges, among other issues are major contributors to suicide.
“Since inception, we have received much crisis calls on suicide cases. Most of these cases are young people attempting suicide and it is so disturbing.” he lamented.
He stated that the most common reasons include financial difficulties, marital crisis, underlying mental issues and others, adding that 62.4% were aged between 20 and 39.
“There is more work to be done and this is why we are working assiduously to help people through our hotlines. We have recorded tremendous progress and hope to do more by way of enlightenment. We need to start creating more awareness for younger people early enough and we will continue to offer to counsel.”
“It is for this reason that our conference to mark the World Suicide prevention day this year will feature a national secondary schools debate around mental health because we want to bring the issue of mental wellbeing into the consciousness of adolescents before they grow into young adults.
This year we also plan to have workshops on media reporting of suicide and for religious leaders. We also hope to begin online training via our website,” Ogbolu revealed.
SURPIN was founded by the Lagos University Teaching Hospital in 2017 for the purpose of suicide prevention through research, crisis intervention, health education and early treatment of depression and drug abuse, which are major risk factors for suicide.