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Suicide is second killer of Taiwanese youth: prevention center

Suicide is second killer of Taiwanese youth: prevention center

Taipei, June 29 (CNA) Suicide remained the second leading cause of death among young Taiwanese men and women aged 15-24 in 2008, with 60 percent of the cases related to relationship problems, a government official reported Monday.
Lee Ming-pin, director of the Taiwan Suicide Prevention Center under the Cabinet-level Department of Health (DOH) , said 4,092 suicide attempts by members of the age bracket were reported to authorities last year, and 201 people succeeded in taking their own lives.
Traffic accidents were the No. 1 factor which took away the lives of Taiwan's youth last year, while malignant tumour was the third leading killer.
The 201 suicide deaths marked a fall of 14 percent from the 2007 number, but the more than 3,600 other young men and women whose attempts to kill themselves failed now form the group with the highest possibility of attempting suicide again, he pointed out.
Lee would not speculate, however, on whether the growing number of suicide attempts were linked to the global economic downturn, saying further analysis was needed.
The number of reported suicide cases involving Taiwan's young men and women has been steadily increasing over the past four years, an expert said.
Based on the youth suicide cases reported to authorities since 2006, Lee said 60 percent were driven by relationship problems, while academic pressure, to the surprise of many, accounted for less than 3 percent of the total.
About 25 percent of these young people sought to end their lives by taking sleeping pills or sedatives, followed by 21 percent of whom tried to slit their wrists. Self-staged poisoning and suicides using gases or by burning charcoal resulted in the highest mortality rate of any method at 35.3 percent, he said.
Lee called on parents and teachers to pay adequate concern to the youth suicide problem by patiently listening to their voices instead of rashly labeling them as "fragile strawberries." The DOH reported earlier in the month that Taiwan's suicide mortality rate increased by 3.3 percent in 2008 from the previous year -- a trend some believed could be linked to financial problems caused by the sagging economy.
Among all age groups, suicide was the ninth leading cause of death in Taiwan last year, up one notch from 2007, a DOH report showed.
(By Flor Wang)




Updated : 2021-07-25 12:15 GMT+08:00