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Suicide in Thailand during the period 1998–2003

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The aim of this study was to examine the characteristic features of suicides in Thailand between 1998 and 2003. Collected data during 1998–2003 from the Bureau of Policy and Strategy, Ministry of Public Health were analyzed to reveal the mortality from suicide according to age, gender, rate and methods of suicides. Suicide rates were found to have increased to a peak of 8.6 per 100 000 (5290 suicides) in 1999 and then to have decreased to 7.1 per 100 000 in 2003. The average suicide rate during 1998–2003 was 7.9 per 100 000 with a male to female ratio of 3.4:1. Male suicide reached a peak for those aged 25–29 years (21.9 per 100 000) while female suicide showed less variation with age. Hanging was the most common method used, followed by ingestion of agricultural toxic substances. Suicide was most prevalent in upper northern region where HIV infection might be related to the high prevalence. Suicide prevention program should focus on males in early adulthood, and particular measures should be conducted to reduce risk factors related to HIV infection among people in northern Thailand.
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Keywords: HIV infection; Thailand; economic recession; epidemiology; suicide

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2006

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