The 024, the telephone line for assistance and suicide prevention, attended this Tuesday, on its first active day, about 1,000 calls, with an average time for each of them of 25 to 30 minutes and some of which were referred to the emergency services.

“The 024 has come to stay”, underlined the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, at the press conference after the Interterritorial Council of the National Health System (CISNS), where she emphasized how from the first day of operation this The phone has shown that it serves to “help and support those who have suicidal ideation” so that they make “a call to life and prevent more deaths”.

Darias has focused on this suicide prevention tool, since in 2020 the attempts increased by 30%, almost 4,000 people killed themselves that year and between 80,000 and 100,000 tried.

The activation of 024, which will be operational 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, is part of the Mental Health Action Plan (2022-2024) presented to the autonomous communities and approved in today’s plenary session by practically unanimity of its members.

The minister wanted to offer some “brushstrokes” of this plan that puts people at the center, strengthens human resources in mental health in order to reduce temporary work, increases the supply of places in psychiatry and psychology and, ultimately, optimizes mental health care in all health fields and fight against stigmatization.

Darias recalled that it is a plan financed by the Ministry of Health with 100 million euros and by the communities with their own contributions to the project.

These 100 million, as he has said, will be broken down between now and 2024 in the State budgets, with this year’s item being 30 million euros, of which 80% will be transferred to the autonomous communities and 20% is for execution by the Ministry.

It has also placed emphasis on the 024 line and the approach to mental health in contexts of greater vulnerability and the prevention of addictive behaviors.

In addition, the minister has advanced that 10 million euros had been distributed to the communities so that they could include training actions in their plans in areas such as health technology, public health surveillance, patient safety or early attention to violence. with the aim, he said, of training 90,000 professionals.

Darias has admitted that the 44 actions included in the plan cannot be “done all at once” and has highlighted the commitment that the new offer of specialized places has more places in child and adolescent psychiatry, added to those already existing.

The head of Health has opted to continue working for mental health: “There was a lacerating silence on this matter, this silence has given way to debate, in the media and in Parliament, due to the determination of the Government of Spain”.

And he thanked the valuable contribution of scientific societies and associations of patients and relatives who “have always been there”.

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