Researchers from the Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention (AISRAP) have published a new annual report exploring suicide surveillance systems, incidence of suicide and characteristics of suicide deaths in Queensland.
Surveillance of suicide is an integral part of suicide prevention. Surveillance can inform government, sector and service providers about suicide deaths among particular groups, within geographical locations or about other factors that may be characteristic to a suicide death, which can assist with the development of appropriate prevention responses and strategies.
The report, Suicide in Queensland: Annual Report 2022, provides a comprehensive summary of findings of suicide deaths occurring in 2021.
In 2021 there were 813 deaths, highlighting an increase of an age standardised rate of 2.3 per 100,000 when compared to 2006 data.
In addition, the report also examines previous suicide data, highlighting key characteristics associated with suicide deaths. The report found that within suicide deaths occurring between 2016-2018:
- Over one third of those who died by suicide have consumed alcohol shortly before their death
- Over half of those who died by suicide lived with a common mental health condition
- Almost six in 10 people who died by suicide expressed intent to die by suicide in their lifetime
- Over one quarter of those who died by suicide during this period had seen a general health practitioner during their lifetime
- Over one quarter of those who died by suicide during this period were unemployed.
Findings of this report suggest the need for suicide prevention approaches to consider a range of factors which may impact on the distress level of a person and death by suicide.