20 Dec 2011

Extra suicide prevention services for holiday season

9:03 am on 20 December 2011

A leader of a suicide prevention project in Rotorua says it needs to provide extra services during the Christmas season.

Recent statistics issued by the Chief Coroner, show Maori have the highest rate of suicide at 17.8 per 100,000.

The rate for Pakeha and other groups is 13.5 per 100,000.

Project leader for Kia Piki Te Ora at Te Runanga o Ngati Pikiao, Michael Naera, says the trust board's GP services are available and the organisation is also working with the local district health board to provide services at this time of year.

Mr Naera says Christmas is a time of joy and celebration, when people can drop their guard, buy presents or consume alcohol or other substances.

But he says the flipside is that the festive season can also bring financial hardship which can result in mental health issues.