THERE are areas in Fiji which have some of the highest suicide rates in the world. This was a statement made by Empower Pacific CEO Rhianon Vichta.
"In Fiji, suicide is a serious health issue and a leading cause of death in some areas. There are areas in Fiji which have some of the highest suicide rates in the world. We all need to educate ourselves on the issues, and evidence-based research such as that conducted by the National Committee On the Prevention of Suicide(NCOPS) was critical to developing better expertise for addressing the issues," she said.
Research conducted by NCOPS revealed that Fiji had a total of 48 completed suicides last year while in the first half of this year alone, 59 completed suicides were recorded.
"Similar to other medical problems, the number of deaths recorded from suicide exposes the weaknesses of our mental health system. Suicides are "red flags" telling us we need to look deeper at what is happening as far as the emotional health of Fijians. Every suicide is a preventable problem and, therefore, we are mandated as a community to understand and provide the missing prevention efforts," said Michael Smith from NCOPS.