Hundreds of children in Portsmouth are poisoning themselves or self-harming

INTENTIONAL self-poisoning or self-harm resulted in children being admitted to hospital in Portsmouth at least 226 times last year, figures show.

By Tom Cotterill
Friday, 11th March 2022, 4:59 pm
Picture posed by a model of a teenage girl showing signs of mental health issues. Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire
Picture posed by a model of a teenage girl showing signs of mental health issues. Photo: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

NHS Digital data shows there were between 226 and 232 admissions for self-harm or self-poisoning for children aged nine to 17 at in Portsmouth between 2020-21.

In 2019-20, there were around 220 hospitalisations.

And at least 235 admissions were recorded between April and November last year – in the first two-thirds of 2021-22.

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Admissions are rounded to the nearest five, and exact numbers are not available when there are fewer than eight cases a year, to protect patient identity.

Olly Parker, head of external affairs at the mental health charity YoungMinds, was worried by the stats, which mirror a national rise. ‘It is deeply concerning to see that hospital admissions for self-harm admissions have risen to their highest since records began,’ he said.

‘The reasons why young people self-harm are often complex, but we know that traumatic experiences at a young age – like bereavement, bullying or abuse – can have a huge impact.’