Australian Bureau of Statistics Causes of Death data

ABS Causes of Death data release 2021

Released by the ABS on Wednesday, 19 October 2022.

  • In 2021, there were 3,144 suicide deaths in Australia, with an age-standardised rate of 12.0 deaths per 100,000 population. The rate for 2021 is the lowest national suicide rate recorded since 2016.
  • The suicide rate for males decreased by 2.3% between 2020 and 2021.
  • The suicide rate for females increased by 5.0% between 2020 and 2021.
  • Young and middle-aged people are more likely to die by suicide, with 81.9% of people who died by suicide being under the age of 65.
  • Men aged over 85 years had the highest male age-specific suicide rate but accounted for the smallest proportion (3.2%) of male suicides.
  • Women aged 50-54 years had the highest female age-specific suicide rate and accounted for the highest proportion (9.9%) of female suicides. In 2020, this age group had the seventh highest rate of female suicides.
  • There were 219 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who died by suicide across Australia in 2021.
  • Using data from New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and Northern Territory, the age-standardised suicide rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people was 27.1 per 100,000.
  • The highest number of suicide deaths occurred in New South Wales (880 deaths). The Northern Territory recorded the highest rate of suicide (18.4 per 100,000 people).
  • Almost 90% of people who died by suicide had at least one risk factor reported. Mood disorders (including depression) were the most common risk factor for both males (36.2%) and females (41.6%) for all age groups except for those 85 years and older.
  • There were 81 people (2.6% of all suicide deaths) who had the COVID-19 pandemic mentioned in either a police, pathology or coronial finding report.

Summaries

Notes

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Data on this page has been updated to reflect the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Catalogue 3303.0 Cause of Death Australia, 2021 released on 19 October 2022.