SEOUL, Sept. 22 (Korea Bizwire) – South Korea witnessed a decline in its suicide rate and the number of suicide deaths last year compared to a year earlier but suicides among teenagers and individuals in their 40s increased.
The overall decline in the suicide rate can be attributed to the return to normalcy following the termination of COVID-19 social distancing rules.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare announced on Thursday the results of its analysis of suicide-related data from the ‘2022 Statistics on the Causes of Death,’ which was released by Statistics Korea.
According to the ‘2022 Statistics on Causes of Death,’ the total number of suicide deaths was 12,906 last year, down 446 or 3.3 percent from a year earlier.
Despite the decrease, however, South Korea maintained its position as the country with the highest suicide rate among OECD members.
The nation’s suicide rate stood at 25.2 per 100,000 people last year, down 3.2 percent from 26 a year before.
Over the past five years, the suicide rate has fluctuated, going from 26.6 in 2018 and 26.9 in 2019 to 25.7 in 2020, 26 in 2021 and 25.2 last year.
Breaking the data down by gender, the number of male suicide deaths (suicide rate) declined from 9,193 (35.9) in 2021 to 9,019 (35.3) in 2022, while for females, it decreased from 4,159 (16.2) to 3,887 (15.1) in 2022.
In terms of age groups, the suicide rate was highest among those in their 80s at 60.6, followed by those in their 70s (37.8), 50s (29), 40s (28.9), 60s (27), 30s (25.3), 20s (21.4) and teenagers (7.2).
The suicide rates for individuals in their 40s and teenagers increased by 2.5 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively, compared to a year ago, while the rates for other age groups declined year on year.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare noted that the decline in last year’s suicide rate can be attributed to the easing of feelings of isolation and the burden of family support resulting from the end of COVID-19 social distancing rules.
M. H. Lee (email@example.com)