Suicide Facts: Deaths and Intentional Self-harm Hospitalisations 2006

Published online: 
02 December 2008


This annual statistical publication presents and summarises suicide information received from the New Zealand Mortality Collection, and admissions to hospital for intentional self-harm sourced from the New Zealand National Minimum Dataset.

Key facts from the publication are:

  • There were 524 deaths from suicide and 2868 hospitalisations (where the patient was admitted via the emergency department and stayed longer than 48 hours) for intentional self-harm in 2006.
  • The suicide rate of 12.2 deaths per 100,000 population declined significantly (by 19.1 percent) since 1998.
  • Intentional self-harm hospitalisations have declined significantly (by 18.8 percent) since 1996.
  • Male suicide rates were almost three times the female suicide rates in 2006, and female hospitalisations for intentional self-harm are approximately twice those for males.
  • Suicide rates for males aged 20-29 decreased by 40 percent since 1996.
  • Māori suicide rates (17.8 per 100,000 population) in 2006 were significantly higher than non-Māori suicide rates (11.0 per 100,000 population).
  • Māori suicide rates were 10.2 percent lower than in 1998, but they are variable rather than trending downwards.
  • Suicide rates for those in the most deprived socioeconomic quintile (quintile 5) were significantly higher than for those in quintile 1.
  • In 2006, males from the most deprived areas were almost three times more likely to be hospitalised than those in the least deprived areas, while females from the most deprived areas were almost twice as likely to be hospitalised as those in the least deprived areas.
  • In 2006, rates of suicide amongst youth (aged 15-24) decreased by 31.5 percent since their peak in 1995. Hospitalisations for intentional self-harm amongst youth decreased by 32.5 percent since 1996.
  • The male youth (15−24 years) age-specific suicide rate in 2006 was 3.9 times the female rate. For intentional self-harm hospitalisations, the opposite was true, with the female youth rate being 2.4 times the male rate.


A minor error has been identified and updated in the electronic version of the Suicide Facts: Deaths and Intentional Self-harm Hospitalisations 2006 publication. The error relates to rates of intentional self-harm hospitalisations by District Health Board, and the female:male ratio of these rates. The error occurred due to an incorrect population being used as a denominator in rate calculations. Table 18 and figure 28 have been updated in the electronic version of the publication.

The publication download (in PDF format) in the top-right column of this web page includes the Errata. For those with hard copies, the amended errata is provided in a separate PDF document beneath the updated version of the publication.

Publishing information

  • Date of publication:
    02 December 2008
  • ISBN:
    978-0-478 31881-4 (Print), 978-0-478 31882-1 (Online)
  • HP number:
  • Citation:
    Ministry of Health. 2008. Suicide Facts: Deaths and intentional self-harm hospitalisations 2006. Wellington: Ministry of Health.
  • Ordering information:
    Only soft copy available to download
  • Copyright status:

    Owned by the Ministry of Health and licensed for reuse under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence.

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