Tuesday, August 1, 2006

A new report released by the New Zealand Ministry of Health titled “Suicide Trends” shows that the suicide rate in New Zealand has decreased 15% since its peak in the late 1990’s, but the attempted suicide rate is increasing.

There were 12 deaths per 100,000 people between 1983-’85. 16.7 deaths per 100,000 people between 1996-’98. And 14.2 deaths per 100,000 people between 2001-’03. But there were 73.1 attempted suicides per 100,000 people between 1995-’97 compared to 82.5 in 2002-’04.

Jim Anderton, Associate Health Minister, said “It provides some comfort to see the long-term trend still appears to be heading in the right direction, with a continued decline or levelling off of self-inflicted deaths but there is no room for complacency.”

The suicide report also shows that:

  • The 25- to 34-year-old age group has the highest suicide rate
  • Between 2000-’03 Maori has the highest suicide rate
  • Men were less likely than woman to go to hospital for attempted suicide because more men died from suicide.

The New Zealand Government has put NZ$10.3 million towards direct suicide prevention. New Zealand News agencies are banned by law from reporting suicide deaths.

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