Health Minister receives award for suicide hotline

The Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has received the Turia award for the Best Social Contribution for the launch of the suicidal behaviour hotline, 024.

This prize, awarded by the magazine Billboard Turia of Valencia, is, in the words of Darias, recognition of the commitment of many fighting people whose contributions in the field of suicide prevention have been and are so important.

In particular, the minister highlighted the work of Dolors López, author of the book ‘I name you’ and who presented the prize to the minister. “I have heard Dolors say many times that people with suicidal behaviours do not want to die, they want to stop suffering,” said the minister, who explained that 024 was born from the drive and demand of people like Dolors.

Darias has reiterated that one of the lessons that the Pandemic has left has been the need to attend to Mental Health and that this Government, led by Pedro Sánchez, has placed Mental Health at the epicentre of public policies.

Thus, the Ministry of Mental Health has promoted the creation of a new specialty of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; the updating of the Mental Health Strategy, after 12 years without doing so, and the implementation of an Action Plan endowed with 100 million euro, with 024 as the first measure.

The 024 line has answered, since it came into operation on May 10, more than 67,000 calls, referring more than 2,600 to emergency services and has intervened in nearly 1,800 calls for suicide in progress or imminent risk. In addition, to serve younger people, it will soon have a chat function.

The 024 hotline is a national service, and offers the ability to translate conversations, so those in crisis who don’t speak Spanish can also be attended.

The Turia Awards celebrate, with this edition, thirty years and have more than 13 categories dedicated to cultural and social projects. This year the Second Vice President of the Government, Yolanda Díaz, who received the Award for the Best Economic and Social Contribution for the Labour Reform of the Government of Spain; and the Secretary of State for Democratic Memory, Fernando Martínez López, who received the Award for the Contribution to the Defence of Human Rights for the Democratic Memory Law.