Jeremy Hunt launches drive for 'zero suicides' in NHS
Jeremy Hunt has ordered NHS mental health trusts to draw up plans to eliminate suicides under their watch.
The Health Secretary announced a £25m drive to achieve “zero suicide as a national ambition”.
He will today outline plans to improve patient monitoring, boost training for staff and ensure faster action if somebody is considered to be at risk.
A quarter of suicides in England occur among people already in contact with mental health services.
In an article for the Daily Telegraph, Mr Hunt said: “The sad truth is that too many people still take their own lives – around 16 people every single day.
“And I am concerned that a considerable number of these deaths – around 80 a year – happen to in-patients in the care of NHS mental health organisations.”
He added: “That is why today I am announcing the next step in our ambition – a new requirement that all NHS mental health organisations should draw up detailed plans to achieve zero suicides, starting with those in inpatient settings, meaning that the NHS in England will be the first country in the world to roll out zero suicide as a national ambition.”