Over the past 10 years, there has been progress in reducing the already relatively low suicide rate in England. However, there were still nearly 4,400 suicides in England in 2009, the latest year for which national data is available.
The prevention of suicide requires co-ordination and contributions from public services and organisations, academic researchers, voluntary groups, the private sector and individuals.
The Government has published a draft suicide prevention strategy for England, which is opened for consultation on 19 July.
The document brings together knowledge about groups at higher risk of suicide, effective interventions and resources available and places a new emphasis on family members. This involves working with relatives to prevent a vulnerable person taking their own life and better supporting those who have been bereaved following a suicide.
The consultation closed on 11 October 2011.
Consultation responses will inform the final strategy, in early 2012.