SEOUL, June 11 (Korea Bizwire) — A recent study has revealed that roughly 4 percent of military service members have had suicidal thoughts.
A research team led by Prof. Lee Seung-yup from the Catholic University of Korea Eunpyeong St. Mary’s Hospital and Dr. Yoon Chang-gyo from the World Health Organization analysed the 2014 survey conducted by the Armed Forces Medical Command.
The survey was conducted with the participation of 7,763 soldiers, non-commissioned and commissioned officers from all three military branches for equal representation.
Among 6,377 respondents with full participation in the survey, 3.8 percent (241 people) reported having suicidal thoughts in the past., including 14 of 227 female service members (6.2 percent) and 227 of 6,150 male service members (3.7 percent).
Another 44 respondents, accounting for 0.69 percent of all respondents, said they had recently gone as far as making plans to commit suicide, while 17 respondents (0.27 percent) said they had actually attempted suicide.
Those with lower military ranks, including recruit, private, and private first class, or those with mental illness or higher stress levels were more likely to have suicidal thoughts.
Experience with suicidal thoughts within the 12 months prior to participating in the survey, Past Year Adverse Events (PAE) caused by accidents or drug abuse, and Accumulated Lifetime Trauma (ALT) were three major factors that heightened the risk of having suicidal thoughts.
Among 2,818 respondents who felt they lacked social support, only 5.5 percent (155 people) said they had had suicidal thoughts. Among 3,559 respondents with high perceived social support, only 2.4 percent (86 people) reported having similar experiences.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)