A NEW county-wide mental well-being and suicide prevention plan looks set to be approved next week.

Worcestershire County Council's Health and Well-being Board will be asked to back the plan when it meets at County Hall on Wendesday, January 29 at 2pm.

Nearly 70,000 adults and about 7,600 children in Worcestershire are experiencing mental ill health at any time and about 50 people each year take their own life.

Councillor Marcus Hart, the council's cabinet member for health and well-being, said: "We want to make sure that people in Worcestershire feel able to talk about mental illness and are able to access help readily when they need it. Nobody should feel ashamed of mental illness.

"Together with our partners, we want to build mental resilience and mental well-being and reduce the risk of people taking their own lives."

Coun Hart added: "Within Worcestershire, there is currently a great deal of work being done to promote mental wellbeing and prevent suicide, but there is more to do. This plan is fundamental to ensuring that all partners work together to make a positive impact upon mental health and changing attitudes towards talking about it. We firmly believe that there is no health without mental health."

The plan identifies three strategic priorities which will inform the work of all partners over the next three years, with the overall aim of improving mental well-being and preventing suicide in Worcestershire.

This includes promoting a universal approach to improving mental well-being through the active development of five ways to well-being

It also aims to raise awareness and early recognition of mental health problems and to promote early intervention and self-help across the life course, including through the recovery journey, as well as improving information about suicide, and support for those who are bereaved or affected by it.