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7,141 suicide cases registered in fiscal year 2020/21: police

2021 Aug 18, 20:53,
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A total of 7,141 suicide cases were filed in Nepal in the fiscal year 2020/21, an increase of 14.2 per cent year-on-year, amid the COVID-19 pandemic as per the latest data released by Nepal Police.

Of the total, 3,928 were males, 2,449 were females and the rest were children, the data showed.

Saroj Prasad Ojha, head of the Psychiatry Department at Tribhuvan University (TU) Teaching Hospital in Kathmandu, blamed mental health problems for more suicides in the country amid COVID-19.

"Almost 90 percent of suicides are associated with mental health issues like anxiety and depression, which have increased this year," DR Ojha said.

"Social isolation has triggered mental health problems among people," he said. "People who were asked to stay indoors during COVID-19 are facing mental health problems related to psycho-socio factors, which are the biggest cause of suicides."

Psycho-socio factors like unemployment, prolonged academic schedules, family disputes, financial problems, alcohol abuse and substance abuse have contributed to most suicides, he said.

Jagannath Lamichhane, who has been working on mental health advocacy for the past 12 years, said, "Instead of viewing suicide as a public health issue, our society sees suicide from a criminal perspective which makes it difficult for people to talk about suicide and mental health. Due to this hesitation, most of the suicide attempts went unreported."

"More than 50 per cent of mental health problems start before adolescence which makes the youth vulnerable," he told Xinhua. "So we have to advocate mental health from the grass-root level by introducing the subject of suicide prevention and mental wellbeing in school education."

(With inputs from Xinhua )


mental health problems Suicide cases in Nepal COVID-19 pandemic Nepal Police psycho-socio factors
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