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GPs urge people concerned about suicide to reach out for help

By Catherine Reilly - 10th Sep 2021

The ICGP has urged the public to “reach out for help” if they are suffering from mental health difficulties or have suicidal thoughts.

The Director of Mental Health Programmes with the ICGP, Dr Brian Osborne, said: “On this World Suicide Prevention Day 2021, we continue to live through the Covid-19 pandemic. The Covid-19 crisis has had profound economic, social and educational impacts. Anyone can be at risk, but those most at risk of mental health difficulties include older people, younger people and those with pre-existing mental health conditions.”

 “We as general practitioners continue to urge people who are having difficulties with their mental health or suicidal thoughts to talk to their GP. In addition to your GP there are telephone helplines, online supports and local organisations that may be able to help.”

Many GPs experience a suicide in their practice, some experience suicide in their families, and as humans, some have mental health difficulties of their own. The ICGP has a range of resources available for members to help support them.

Dr Andrée Rochfort, Director of Quality Improvement and Doctors’ Health with the ICGP, said: “The ICGP supports colleagues in suicide prevention and we work closely with the National Office for Suicide Prevention.”

“A suicide in a practice can have a huge professional and personal impact on a GP. Supports are available. Everyone needs to promote the prevention of suicide in Ireland.”

The HSE YourMentalHealth Information Line is available day or night for information on what other services and supports are available near you. Freephone 1800 111 888 or visit Mental health – HSE.ie

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