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Suicide prevention in Argentina 

Suicide prevention in Argentina
Suicide prevention in Argentina

Carlos Martínez

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date: 27 January 2022

The year 2007 will perhaps be a particularly meaningful year in the history of Argentina, because of the newly born Suicidology Discipline. The National Suicidology Congress has commemorated the 40 years of Centro de Asistencia al Suicida de Buenos Aires (Buenos Aires Suicide Prevention Centre), which runs the oldest telephone helpline in the country, the creation of the Suicidology Section in the Argentinian Psychiatric Association, and the discussion about creating a Professorship in Suicidology at Universidad de Palermo, Buenos Aires.

These milestones were preceded by eight consecutive annual congresses organized by the Argentine Suicide Prevention Association from 1997 to 2004. In these congresses volunteers, therapists, teachers, students, civil servants, journalists, social workers, lawyers, researchers, survivors and those who have eventual interest in the subject participated.

This particular process of public awareness promoted the creation of the Expert Commission in the Health Department, in order to formulate the National Programme of Suicide Prevention. From 2008 to 2011, the work will focus on four main areas: collecting information, planning of preventive activities, training, and the evaluation of human resources available for suicide prevention. In 2005, the national suicide rate in Argentina was 8.2 per cent per 100,000 inhabitants, compared to 6 and 7 per cent per 100,000 inhabitants registered at the end of the twentieth century.

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