SEOUL, Dec.1 (Korea Bizwire) – A research team lead by professor Lee Won-jin at the Korea University’s Preventive Medicine Department has announced that since a ban was implemented on the production and sales of Paraquat, a herbicide often used to commit suicide, the number of suicides committed by drinking poisonous herbicides decreased by 56 percent.
Paraquat is a type of herbicide used to kill weeds. Though it is effective in its intended purpose, the highly poisonous substance can also cause serious damage to the human body, and consumption can lead to the loss of respiratory functions.
The Rural Development Administration canceled the registration of the herbicide in 2011, and stopped production and supply of the product in 2012.
As a result, the total number of suicides committed by consuming poison decreased from 5.26 people per 100,000 in 2011 to 2.67 people per 100,000 in 2013, which is a 56 percent drop. The research team explained that the decrease was especially noticeable among men, the elderly and those in rural regions.
Professor Lee commented that there is still more to be done. “By regulating Paraquat, we were able to prevent 847 suicides in 2013. But there still is a need to keep an eye on other substances that can act as substitutes for Paraquat, as well as reasonable regulations.”
The results of the research were published in a recent issue of the International Journal of Epidemiology.
By Kevin Lee (email@example.com)