Suicide Prevention is a priority for Hertfordshire County Council
The second anniversary of the Journalist’s Charter for the Sensitive Reporting of Suicide was highlighted at Hertfordshire’s Suicide Prevention Network event on Friday 31 January.
The event brought together over 100 professionals with an interest in suicide prevention and was opened by Hertfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Prevention, Cllr Tim Hutchings, who said: “Suicide Prevention is a key priority for us and this is a great opportunity to reflect on the work achieved since our Suicide Prevention Strategy was produced three years ago, and build on it for our 2020-25 strategy.
You can read the full press release here.
Review of the Hertfordshire Suicide Prevention Programme
A review of the Hertfordshire Suicide Prevention Programme was carried out between December 2018 and April 2019.
Stakeholders were interviewed and were largely positive about the suicide prevention programme and its potential to develop further. They also provided several ideas for more projects to be considered. Challenges to the partnership were also shared including sustaining the enthusiasm and engagement of participants in delivering the range of desired outcomes in the action plan.
The Hertfordshire Suicide Prevention Strategy and Action Plan 2017 Review (PDF 298KB)Opening in a new window.
What the Hertfordshire public thinks
A survey of Hertfordshire residents revealed that they think suicide is an issue and would like to know more about what we are doing to prevent it. The survey launched 20 December 2018 via social media and ran until the end of January 2019.
749 people responded, which wildly exceeded expectations. The majority wanted more information about what we are doing to prevent suicide, with social media overwhelmingly chosen as the preferred means to be updated. 264 people (over 35% of total respondents) told us they would be interested in participating in suicide prevention work.
2019-2021 Suicide Audit
The suicide audit aims to give a view of deaths by suicide within Hertfordshire compared to the rest of the UK. This information can be used to inform the suicide prevention strategy and planned actions. The most recent suicide audit for Hertfordshire is now available in the following link:
Suicide Audit 2019 - 2021 (hertshealthevidence.org)
- This suicide audit for Hertfordshire is the second to include three years of data.
- It provides an overview of deaths in Hertfordshire given a Coroner’s conclusion of suicides at inquests held between 1 January 2019 and 31 December 2021.
- The audit uses information from files held by the coroner service and has been carried out to a robust and repeatable methodology introduced in 2017.
- 203 deaths are included in the audit, with most deaths occurring in 2019 (39.4%) and 2020 (27.6%).
- 101 coroners inquests had a conclusion of suicide in 2019, 62 in 2020, and 40 in 2021. The Coroners Court closed for parts of 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in fewer inquests taking place in these years. The lower number of inquests with a conclusion of suicides in 2020 and 2021 should not be interpreted as a reduction in the number of suicides but rather is likely reflective of the lower number of inquests occurring in 2020 and 2021.
Queries may be directed to: SuicidePreventionHerts@hertfordshire.gov.uk.
World Suicide Prevention Day 2022
World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September provides the opportunity for people, across the globe, to raise awareness of suicide and suicide prevention. In Hertfordshire we have been working with people with lived experience of suicide to collect and share their stories to raise awareness.
Resources for running an online or offline self-help group
The opportunity to share your experience and support others can have great benefits. We have developed some resources Opening in new window to help individuals who are running a group.