Suicide rate high in women than men: Dalil
KABUL (PAN): Public Health Minister Dr. Suraya Dalil has said more females attempted or considered suicide than males in Afghanistan, but there is no accurate and confirmed data available about the number of deaths.
Speaking at a ceremony marking the Suicide Prevention Day at the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) on Wednesday, Dalil said suicide attempts among young females was due to violence which affected their personality.
“Young ladies between 16 to 19 years of age are more likely to attempt suicide compared to other age group,” she said, adding 95 percent suicides involved uneducated or less educated females.
However, the remaining five percent cases could be accidental and approximately 80 percent people who attempted suicide were married, the minister said, adding common age for single female to attempt suicide is age 14-year.
“The reasons involved in these cases are forced marriage, domestic violence, rape, illicit relations, and negative competition among families, poverty, scarcity and family responsibilities and mental problems,” she concluded.
She further said, according to WHO available data, annually one million people committed suicide. “Approximately one person dies every 40 seconds of suicide and it is the second cause of death in young people worldwide. The number of people dying from suicide in a year is more than the number of people dying from the war and fight.”
Dalil continued it was estimated that five percent of the population attempted suicide once in life and the prevalence thoughts was 10-14 percent in the world.
Her ministry has started activities through the mental health department in Afghanistan to prevent suicide incidents among the people, she said.
The activities include: training psycho social counselors in all Afghanistan, training professional staff in this field and establishment of counseling centers in Kabul and other difference provinces.
World Health Organization (WHO) representative Dr. Richard Peeper Korn on the occasion said suicide was not only a health issue, but a complex and complicated social problem involving many aspects. “People should realise that suicides are presently a real issue in the community.”
He said, “The latest Burden of Disease Estimate indicates that suicide is a major public health problem in high-income countries and is an emerging problem in low and middle-income countries”.
He further said major priorities for suicide prevention included research on suicide and suicidal behavior, awareness campaigns, strengthening protective factors, training of health professionals, increasing resources allocation and access to mental health services and reducing stigma.
“All partners need to work closely with MoPH to develop effective strategies and implementation of interventions to save lives.”
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.