01 February 2006
Suicide deaths in 2003
- A total of 515 people died by suicide, compared with 465 in 2002.
- The age-standardised suicide rate was 11.5 deaths per 100,000 population, compared with 10.8 in 2002.
- The three-year moving average age-standardised rate of suicide for the total population increased to a peak of 14.0 deaths per 100,000 population for the
- 1995–1997 and 1996–1998 periods. It then decreased until the most recent period (2001–2003).
- Males continue to have a higher age-standardised suicide rate than females (16.9 compared with 6.2 per 100,000 population respectively). From 1995, there was a decline in the male rate, and then after 2000 there was a general increase in the female rate.
- The all-ages sex ratio for the suicide rate in New Zealand was 2.7 male suicides to every female suicide per 100,000 population.
- The age-standardised rate of suicide was higher for Māori than for non-Māori. For Māori males and females, the age-standardised rates were 21.1 and 6.4 deaths per 100,000 population respectively, and for non-Māori males and females, they were 15.6 and 5.9 deaths per 100,000 population respectively.
- For life-cycle age groups, for females, 15-24-year-olds had the highest age-specific suicide rate (11.0 per 100,000 population), while for males, 25-44-year-olds had the highest age-specific suicide rate (28.4 per 100,000 population).
- New Zealand’s all-ages suicide rate was the sixth highest among selected OECD countries for males, and the fourth highest for females.
- The least deprived areas of New Zealand had a suicide rate of 8.8 per 100,000 population compared with 13.2 per 100,000 population in the most deprived areas of New Zealand.
Hospitalisation for suicide and intentional self-harm in 2002/03
- The age-standardised hospitalisation rate for suicide and intentional self-harm for the total population was 131.5 per 100,000 population, compared with 128.2 in 2001/02.
- The sex ratio for hospitalisation for suicide and intentional self-harm in New Zealand was 2.1 female hospitalisations to every male hospitalisation per 100,000 population.