Valuing the benefits of suicide prevention

Valuing the benefits of suicide prevention

Frontier was commissioned by Shout 85258 (“Shout”) to do a break-even analysis, looking at how many suicides need to be prevented each year to cover the annual costs of Shout’s text messaging service and programme.

Shout is a 24/7 UK text messaging service for times when people feel they need immediate support. It is a mental health service which started in May 2018, set up by Mental Health Innovations, a digital mental health charity. In early December 2021 Shout had its one millionth conversation.

Emily Nielsen presented our findings at a launch event yesterday. Some key findings included:

  • The evidence points to saving more lives than the break-even levels given Shout’s costs, with over 4,700 active rescues in 2020 and only 3.3 unique lives needing to be saved to break-even using the DfT VPF (the value of a prevented fatality) metric.
  • Shout provides a service that is especially valued by young people, meaning that the threshold for breaking-even could in fact be lower, given the greater number of life years saved by preventing the suicide of a young person.
  • Shout provides support to many people at risk of suicide who may not otherwise be captured by alternative mental health programmes and systems

On this basis, we found that Shout delivers a value for money service that makes a real difference to the lives of its users, making the case for public sector funding.

To read the full report, please click here.

For further information please contact or call +44 (0) 20 7031 7000.