Dáil Éireann - Volume 637 - 27 June, 2007

Written Answers. - Suicide Incidence.

Deputy Leo Varadkar asked the Minister for Health and Children the provision she will make for additional funding for suicide prevention; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [17516/07]

  Deputy Mary Harney: “Reach Out”, the National Strategy for Action on Suicide Prevention, was launched in 2005. The National Office for Suicide Prevention was established by the Health Service Executive to oversee the implementation of the Strategy; to coordinate suicide prevention activities across the State; to consult widely in relation to the planning of future initiatives and to ensure best practice in suicide prevention.

In 2006, an additional €1.2 million was allocated to the Health Service Executive specifically for suicide prevention initiatives. A further €1.85 million has been allocated for 2007 bringing the total funding available to support suicide prevention initiatives on an annual basis to approximately €8 million. This funding will be used to develop and implement national training prog[820] rammes; to complete the availability of self-harm services through A&E Departments; to implement recommendations arising from a review of bereavement services; to support voluntary organisations working in the field of suicide prevention and to support the World Congress on Suicide Prevention which is being held in Killarney this year under the auspices of the International Association for Suicide Prevention.

The 2007 funding is also being used by the National Office for Suicide Prevention to implement a national positive mental health awareness programme. Future funding will be considered in the context of the estimates process for 2008 and subsequent years.