People in contact with the mental health system are a high priority for suicide prevention as some mental illnesses are associated with an increased risk of suicide:

  • People with borderline personality disorder are 45 times more likely to die by suicide compared to the general population
  • People with major depressive disorder are 20 times more likely to die by suicide
  • People with schizophrenia are 13 times more likely to die by suicide
  • Approximately 20 per cent of people who die by suicide have had contact with a specialist mental health service within the previous month.

This initiative will support staff in the mental health system to redesign procedures, reduce risks and build skills to prevent suicide among people in acute and community based mental health services.

In line with national and international best practice, Zero Suicides in Care will foster a just and restorative organisational culture and strong service leadership to promote safety for patients and staff. A blame-free working environment will be upheld where excellent health care ensures that people with mental health conditions and their family are active participants in their care and are supported to recover and protected from self-harm.

Information for health professionals

Further reading

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Current as at: Wednesday 9 September 2020
Contact page owner: Mental Health Branch