1307.8 - Australian Capital Territory in Focus, 2007  
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Contents >> Health >> Suicide

SUICIDE

Suicide continues to be a major public health issue. Although death by suicide is a relatively uncommon event (nationally, occurring at a rate of about 1 per 10,000 population per year), the human and economic costs are substantial. Apart from the loss of human life, the health care costs associated with attempted suicide and the circumstances surrounding the death can be very difficult for family and friends to deal with.


Suicide can be defined as the deliberate taking of one's life. To be classified as a suicide, a death must be recognised as being due to other than natural causes. It must also be established by coronial enquiry that the death resulted from a deliberate act of the deceased with the intention of ending his or her own life.


In 2005, there were 35 suicides registered in the ACT, an increase of 9 suicides (26%) from 2004. The national suicide figure in 2005 was 2,100 people. Fluctuations in suicide numbers from year to year, especially in smaller jurisdictions such as the ACT, are to be expected because of the small numbers involved.

7.12 Suicides, By sex and state/territory

ACT
NSW
Vic.
Qld
SA
WA
Tas.
NT
Aust.
no.
no.
no.
no.
no.
no.
no.
no.
no.

Males
2000
25
588
382
421
161
206
40
37
1 860
2001
34
613
412
406
168
212
51
39
1 935
2002
22
552
386
431
140
188
54
44
1 817
2003
np
510
409
371
154
167
54
np
1 736
2004
19
464
396
371
141
156
70
44
1 661
2005
26
438
393
360
182
169
52
37
1 657
Females
2000
4
142
129
120
38
55
10
5
503
2001
12
172
129
93
39
57
13
4
519
2002
4
140
142
106
30
54
16
11
503
2003
np
130
131
95
39
59
15
np
477
2004
7
123
125
82
37
38
18
7
437
2005
9
111
112
99
49
34
22
8
444
Persons
2000
29
730
511
541
199
261
50
42
2 363
2001
46
785
541
499
207
269
64
43
2 454
2002
26
692
528
537
170
242
70
55
2 320
2003
35
640
540
466
193
226
69
44
2 213
2004
26
587
521
453
178
194
88
51
2 098
2005
35
549
505
459
231
203
74
45
2 101

np not available for publication but included in totals where applicable, unless otherwise indicated
Suicides, Australia, 2005 (cat. no. 3309.0).


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