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Psychiatry Investigation 2006;3(2):7-14.
Epidemiology of Suicide in Korea
Jin Pyo Hong, MD1;Myeng Ji Bae, MD1; and Tongwoo Suh, MD, DrPH2;
1;Department of Psychiatry, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, 2;Korea Institute of Health and Social Affairs, Seoul, Korea
Abstract
<p class="MsoPlainText" style="word-spacing: 1; line-height: 150%; margin-top: 0; margin-bottom: 0" align="left"><font face="HY중고딕" size="2">In 2002, an estimated 877,000 lives were lost world-wide through suicide. In Korea, suicidal deaths have increased very rapidly since the economic crisis in 1997, and suicide is regarded as one of the most serious public health and social issues in Korea. This study examines the current situation and trends of the recently increasing rates of suicidal deaths, ideas, and attempts in Korea. This study reanalyzed the 20-year statistics of suicidal deaths recently published by the National Statistical Office and the data of the National Health Interview Survey conducted in 1995 and 1998. The suicidal mortality rate in Korea is quite high compared to those in other OECD countries and the rate of increase is the highest. The rate of suicidal idea is high among males, those in their late teens and those in their seventies. The suicidal attempt rate is higher among females and those in their late teens. Suicide, one of the important causes of death in the younger age group, has a greater socioeconomic impact than other common causes of death in the older age group. Therefore, we are in urgent need of a public mental health network to prevent suicide and to detect and treat early mental health problems leading to suicide.


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Key words   Suicide;Epidemiology;Suicidal attempt.


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