When interpreting or using suicide data it is important to remember that behind the numbers are people, families and communities impacted by suicide in Australia.
The reasons people take their own life are complex and often there is no single reason why a person attempts or dies by suicide.
ABS Causes of Death data release 2020
- In 2020, there was a decrease in suicide deaths from 3,318 deaths in 2019 (12.9 per 100,000) to 3,139 deaths in 2020 (12.1 per 100,000). This is the lowest national suicide rate recorded since 2016.
- The suicide rate for males decreased by 6.1% between 2019 and 2020.
- The suicide rate for females decreased by 7.9% between 2019 and 2020.
- Young and middle-aged people are more likely to die by suicide, with 83.6% of people under 65 years.
- Men over 85 years had the highest age-specific suicide rate but accounted for the smallest proportion (3.1%) of male suicides. Men aged 40-54 years accounted for over one quarter (26.7%) of male suicides.
- Women aged 45-49 years had the highest age-specific suicide rate and accounted for the highest proportion (10.9%) of female suicides.
Data on this webpage has been updated to reflect the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Catalogue 3303.0 Cause of Death Australia, 2020 released in September 2021.