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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Canadian Psychological Association Supports National Action on Suicide

The Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) supports a call for national action on suicide. Suicide is the seconding leading cause of death among youth and reaches its highest rates in middle and even later life. The personal and societal costs of suicide are inestimable.

Suicide is a behaviour that is most often associated with a mental disorder like depression. As is the case for many mental health problems and disorders, there is no single cause that predicts it or a single intervention that prevents it. Suicide results from many and complex biological, psychological and social factors and successful national action on suicide will need to comprise them all.

In the view of the CPA, there are two very significant factors that stand in the way of persons with mental disorders and suicidal thoughts and behavior getting the help they need. The first is the stigma attached to talking about suicide and mental disorders. 

Being listened to and supported when talking about it will help ensure that a person in distress seeks out the professional help he or she needs. The second is the inaccessibility of mental health services and supports in Canada. Even those who ask for help may not receive it - often because it is not funded, or is underfunded, by public and private health insurance plans.

Psychologists are the country’s largest, regulated group of specialized mental health service providers. Psychological services are not funded by public health insurance plans and are underfunded by private health insurance plans. With cuts to the salaried mental health care resources of hospitals and schools, the needs of those with mental health problems are just not being met.

The entire news release can be found here.