Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Suicide and hospitalised self-harm in Australia: trends and analysis (AIHW)

Suicide and intentional self-harm are significant public health problems in Australia, with the number of Australians who died by suicide averaging around 2,000 each year since the mid-1980s, according to a report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). For over a decade, more than 20,000 Australians have been admitted to hospital each year as a result of intentionally self‑inflicted injuries.

The report, Suicide and hospitalised self-harm in Australia: trends and analysis 2010-11, shows that suicides accounted for 2,282 injury deaths in Australia in 2010-11. This is lower than when the number of deaths by suicide peaked at over 2,600 in 1997 and 1998.

'Suicide death rates for males, adjusted for age, have fluctuated at around 20 deaths per 100,000 people between 1921 and 2010,' said AIHW spokesperson Professor James Harrison.

Rates for females were about 5 deaths per 100,000 people per year in most of this period.

Among Indigenous Australians rates of self-harm are about 2.5 times and two times higher than rates for non-Indigenous males and females respectively.

Media release

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