The Mental Health Authority has bemoaned the increasing rate of suicide cases among persons between the ages of 16-36 years.
Chief Executive Officer Dr. Akwasi Osei speaking on the issue disclosed that unemployment and relationship problems were high among victims between the ages of 16-35 who commit suicide.
He said an estimated 1,500 suicide cases are recorded annually in Ghana, and its prevalence is two times higher in men compared to women.
The CEO was worried the situation had not been given the needed attention.
He said some of these victims had completed school and are unemployed, and out of frustration, they commit suicide.
”We need a policy that will ensure that we have a health line (toll-free line) where everybody can call freely,” he suggested.
He underscored the need for people to have a basic understanding of what it is to be stressed up, and when you begin to have thoughts of suicide, what you will do.
According to him, progress, is been made in decriminalising attempted suicide, but funding remains a setback.
The Authority he revealed met with the Parliamentary Select Committee on the matter, and the only thing left is for the bill to be laid before the House for deliberation.
”But I think we’ve gone far. I hope that by the end of this year, it would have been passed. Within this year, the government has released only Ghc26,000to the Mental Health Authority. We are already in July, and this should have come in the first quarter. And even if it had come at the time it should have come, Ghc26,000, basically what can it do? So we need a special funding mechanism which is why the Mental Health Levy is there”.