NHS encouraging people to 'keep talking' as it launches suicide prevention campaign

The NHS is encouraging people to 'keep talking' as it launches a suicide prevention campaign.

Wednesday, 22nd April 2020, 11:45 am
Updated Thursday, 23rd April 2020, 4:22 pm
The NHS is encouraging people to 'keep talking' as it launches a suicide prevention campaign.

Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS) is running the campaign to encourage residents to keep reaching out to loved ones throughout the coronavirus (covid-19) pandemic.

The ICS is concerned that potential suicides may increase in Lancashire and South Cumbria as people stay home during lockdown and self-isolation.

To tackle this, it has created materials to share on social media and via local community hubs asking people to call their friends and family and keep talking by text, phone and video call, while social-distancing measures are in place.

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The four main audiences are: young people and older teenagers used to spending lots of time with their friends; parents who are juggling home working and home schooling; men who have been furloughed, made redundant or who are self-employed; older and vulnerable people who are self-isolating.

Paul Hopley, ICS Mental Health Deputy Director, said: “We know that lots of people are struggling with having to stay home during coronavirus, and with lockdown being extended another three weeks the effect on people’s mental health could be staggering.

“Some people are used to having a lot of face-to-face contact with friends and family, while others might find that being furloughed or having cancelled work contracts has given them a lot of time to worry.

“As well as practical support it’s important that people have sufficient emotional support and reach out virtually to their networks. If that’s not possible they need to know that there are many organisations out there ready to offer them a listening ear.

“Anyone struggling should call Samaritans on 116123 or any of the organisations we have listed on our website healthierlsc.co.uk/MentalHealthSupport.”