Researchers from Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and the United Kingdom published a new study comparing international suicide death surveillance systems and recommended best practice.
The research paper, Real-Time Suicide Surveillance: Comparison of International Surveillance Systems and Recommended Best Practice, examined five major real-time suicide mortality surveillance systems to identify components of similarities and differences between the systems and their value.
The research paper emphasises the value of having real-time suicide data so that the data can be used to inform changes in prevention approaches and policy, better responding to the present landscape of suicide within a country.
Results of this study found many similarities between the surveillance systems, with researchers suggesting real-time suicide surveillance systems could be most effective when:
- Data is collected routinely from one source
- Data is routinely reviewed for sensitivity
- Machine learning systems are used to improve timeliness and accuracy of data to support reporting for specific populations and regional concerns.
Authors suggest that future research should examine how real-time suicide surveillance systems impact prevention practices, to help determine usefulness of these systems.