The Department of Health (DOH) recently launched the "Hopeline Project," which aims to strengthen its efforts to prevent the occurrence of suicides.
The unveiling of the project--which was undertaken with the National Center for Mental Health (NCMH) in collaboration with the Natasha Goulbourn Foundation (NGF) and Globe Telecom--was one of the highlights in the observance of the 2016 World Suicide Prevention.
Hopeline is a 24/7 counseling hotline for individuals in crisis. The NGF currently has nine crisis responders stationed in Metro Manila. The NCMH under the DOH will provide the training of additional psychiatrists and psychologists who will be tasked to answer the Hopeline calls.
"DOH chief Dr. Paulyn Jean B. Rosell-Ubial explained that the project is a part of the initiative of the DOH to bridge the gap in the mental health services in the country," reports Philippine News Agency.
CNN Philippines revealed that while the country has "the lowest suicide rate among ASEAN member states," there are still many Pinoys who can be saved.
According to NCMH, the suicide rate in the Philippines is 2.5 for men and 1.7 for women (per 100,000 people). "In 2012, the DOH estimated more than 2,500 suicides: 2,008 males and 550 females," CNN Philippines added.
The numbers to call are the following: (02) 804-HOPE (4673); 0917 558 HOPE (4673) and 2919. These numbers are toll-free for GLOBE and TM subscribers.
The callers can also connect to the national assistance number--8888--which will then channel the calls to Hopeline.
There are other hotlines you can call. Mental health support group Buhay Movement compiled a list including websites and social media pages that provide mental health support.