Canada has sixth-highest suicide rate in the Americas, first study of its kind

Canada has the sixth-highest suicide rate in 2019 among 33 countries in North, Central and South America, according to a new study.

Haintroduced by Published Feb. 23 in the Center for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). Lancet Community Health, According to CAMH, this study is the first to examine the impact of specific contextual factors associated with nationwide suicide rates in the Americas.

This study examined suicide rates from 2000 to 2019 using a cross-sectional ecological study.

In 2019, there were more than 97,000 suicides in the Americas region, with a suicide rate of 9.0 per 100,000 population, the study says. It was 14.2 per 100,000 men and 4.1 per 100,000 women.

Suicide rates vary considerably between subregions. North America had the highest suicide rate at 14.1 per 100,000 population. The Andes region of South America had the lowest rate at 3.9 per 100,000 population. The study attributed this to “notable sociocultural differences between regions.”

There were also large differences in suicide rates between countries. Studies have shown an incidence of 0.3 per 100,000 population in Barbados, but up to 65 per 100,000 population in Guyana.

Suicide rates differ significantly between men and women, calling the study “a culture-bound phenomenon, meaning that gender and cultural expectations of suicide strongly determine both its existence and magnitude.” .

As such, it It is also likely that relevant contextual factors are involved suicide intention Become different for male and woman,” he says.

Studies considered health data The World Health Organization’s Global Health Estimates found that suicide rates in the Americas are increasing, while they are decreasing in all other study regions. This highlights the “urgent need for stronger and more targeted suicide prevention efforts”.

Even between regions within a country, studies have found differences in suicide rates.

“Prevention efforts need to target not only vulnerable populations, but also the contextual factors that contribute to the burden of suicide mortality in a given country. demanded,” said the study.

The study also looked at factors influencing suicide rates and concluded that eight population-level factors influence the number of suicides. These include intravenous drug use, alcohol use, “education inequality,” number of doctors per population, population density, health care costs, homicide rates, and unemployment rates.

Educational inequality was defined as the unequal distribution of academic resources.

The study found that the average suicide rate among men decreased as per capita health care costs increased and decreased when the proportion of moderately densely populated countries increased. But as mortality from homicide, the prevalence of intravenous drugs, alcohol use and unemployment rose, so did the rate of death among men from suicide.

For women, the number of doctors per 10,000 population reduced suicide rates and moderately increased population density. As education inequality and unemployment increased, so did the number of female suicides.

“The contextual factors that significantly influenced suicide rates for men and women were very different,” the study said. “Sex should be considered when adapting and testing interventions for suicide risk reduction and when developing national suicide prevention strategies.”

Study author and CAMH scientist Dr. Shannon Lange says the study will help governments develop more effective national suicide prevention strategies.

“Our findings highlight the critical importance of considering gender differences when developing, adapting and testing suicide risk reduction initiatives. Gender norms and expectations influence suicide risk factors. , so it cannot be a one-size-fits-all approach,” Lange said in a news release.

“Our results show that multi-sectoral measures targeting health and social welfare should be emphasized.”

Overall, this study found some significant differences in factors associated with suicide rates in men and women.