WHO and DRISP – an analysis of the Eastern Mediterranean Region

DRISP has contributed to the international work of suicide prevention. As a consultant for WHO, Annette Erlangsen has conducted a situation analysis of suicide and attempted suicide in WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Region (WHO EMRO) from 2000 to 2020. WHO EMRO consists of the countries: Afghanistan, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, West Bank and Gaza, and Yemen.

The analysis found that:

  1. In more than half of the studied countries, data on suicide was either insufficient or of poor quality, making it challenging to monitor the incidence of suicide.
  2. From 2000 to 2019, there was a 7.6% decrease in the suicide rate in the region, primarily among women.
  3. In more than half of the countries, suicide is still considered a criminal act. This is problematic as it can potentially imply that individuals at risk of suicide might not seek help.

The situational analysis can be found here: