By Chioma Obinna
No fewer than 10 percent of all referrals at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, LUTH, are suicide attempts even as four cases are seen at the hospital monthly.
A consultant psychiatrist at LUTH, Dr Yewande Oshodi, who disclosed this yesterday at the media launch of the hospital’s campaign against suicide, tagged: “ One More Day’ to save and counsel individuals who have attempted suicide, said the recent suicide by a medical doctor in Lagos was not strange but had been under reported.
This is coming on the heels of WHO statistics which showed that approximately one million people die by suicide each year and, for everyone who dies by suicide, about 20 more have attempted suicide.
Oshodi said that over a five-year study period, 7.2 percent of cases referred to psychiatry consultation –liaison services in LUTH-were cases related to suicide.
She said reports had shown that during lifetime about 3.0 percent of Nigerians have had thoughts about ending their lives, 1.0 percent will plan on how to kill themselves and just under 1.0 percent will carry out an attempt to kill themselves. “Suicide is most unwanted incidence anyone could like to experience either by losing a loved ones and it is preventable to some degree”, the consultant psychiatrist said.
She said suicide could be prevented, saying is a sensational event and everybody should know what to do. Oshodi, who blamed the increase in suicide attempts on the stigma associated with mental health, said: “The stigma of psychotics and mental health makes it difficult for people to come out when they are going through issues. “