Police Officer Chen Ko-da from Jianan Police Station in Pingzhen District recalled that during a previous patrol at 2 AM, he found a car parked at the side of the road with the engine still running. His professional instinct warned him that something was seriously wrong. He approached to have a closer look, and noticed a woman slumped over the steering wheel with the smell of alcohol in the air and some burning charcoal next to her. He was very fortunate to be able to rescue her in time. In light of such situations, Taoyuan City Department of Public Health offers citizens free face-to-face counseling service. It also led the nation in providing the “24-hour all-day-round visitation of individuals with a record of attempted suicide.” Furthermore, this year (2017) the agency also drafted plans to set up “Locations for Face-to-face Counseling Services” at all 13 districts across the City. By timely speaking to trained counselors and experiencing the companionship and warmth of professionals, individuals will be able to think positively and approach issues from a different outlook. Tweaking the perspective on things can easily attract good fortune.
According to Taoyuan City Department of Public Health, the 2016 National Suicide Standardized Death Rate was 12.3 individuals per 100,000 people. The number for Taoyuan City is 11.9, showing a drop of 19% from 14.7 individuals per 100,000 people in 2012. It is also the only city among the six direct-rule municipalities to have successfully reduced the fatality rate of suicides for five consecutive years.
Taoyuan City Department of Public Health noted that people today often face depression and even helplessness and distress from multiple sources, such as relationships, workplace problems, family problems, or from chronic diseases. It released the “Taoyuan City Mental Health Promotion Film – Changing Views” to be broadcast at public places, frontline service agencies facing citizens, and YouTube. For those interested in watching the film, please look up the key words “Taoyuan City Changing Views.”
The Department of Public Health reminds the public that there are always low points in everyone’s life. Caring for each other, listening to each other and providing a helping hand at the right moments often help to save precious lives. For related information on mental health, please visit the website of Taoyuan City Mental Health Center ( https://dph.tycg.gov.tw/mental/ ) or call Lifeline (1995), Teacher Chang (1980) or the 24-hour Reassurance hotline (0800-788-995) for help.