Speaking ahead of the publication of Scottish suicide statistics tomorrow, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has warned that the statistics need to be published more regularly so government and services can swiftly respond to concerning trends.
The most recent suicide statistics were published by ISD Scotland in June 2019. They stated there were 784 probable suicides registered in Scotland in 2018, which was an increase from 680 in 2017.
Alex Cole-Hamilton commented:
"I'm worried about what the report on Tuesday will reveal. Behind the statistics there will be hundreds of families whose lives have been turned upside down.
"We know the danger and uncertainty of the pandemic has left many more people struggling with their mental health. But under the current reporting system we will have to wait until next summer to start to learn the true scale of this crisis.
"The system needs to be urgently upgraded because the time lags that are built into it are leaving us in the dark at a time when we need to be acting quicker than ever before to save lives and ensure support services have everything they need."