Sat, Dec 10, 2005 - Page 2 News List

National suicide-prevention center opens in Taipei


A national center for suicide prevention was inaugurated yesterday as part of the government's efforts to curb the rising suicide rate in Taiwan.

According to a survey conducted by the Rheumatology Association (RA) under the commission of the Department of Health, around 7 percent of respondents above age 17 said they had thought of suicide.

A total of 8,835 households around the country -- excluding the outlying islands -- were interviewed for the survey over the course of the past year. The results show that around 1.7 percent of the respondents had thought of committing suicide in the past year, some 0.3 percent had planned to take their own lives and about 0.2 percent had attempted to kill or injure themselves.

Lee Ming-pin (李明濱), chairman of the RA and director of the new facility, said the survey shows that more female respondents than males had thought, planned or tried to commit suicide.

Lee suggested that humanitarian efforts be made to find out the reasons for the findings.

Suicide ranked ninth in Taiwan's top 10 causes of death last year, with over 3,000 people taking their own lives. This year, the suicides of comedian Ni Min-jan (倪敏然) and psychiatrist Chen Kuo-hua (陳國華) shocked the public.

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