EMEA Region: Suicide Statistics

Goals

To gather suicide statistics for the EMEA region of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (or just Europe if other regional statistics are not publicly available) with the key data points to include: attempted suicides, what proportion of suicides/attempts are people who were 'known to the health system' (i.e. they were seeing a doctor and/or taking anti-depressants) compared with the number who were 'outside the system' (i.e. they were not in contact with a doctor and were not on medication), and any demographic differences between these two groups in order to help prove or disprove the hypothesis that more men bottle things up and get to the point of suicide before reaching out for help, whereas more women get help and are at least 'in the system' and to inform the pharma development of an anti-depressant.

Early Findings

Our initial research on suicide statistics in the EMEA region with a first focus on Europe revealed insights. However, we were unable to find data or statistics that were recent and publicly available about being outside or inside of the health system and how this factored into suicide rates. Here are key pieces of information we found:

Suicide Statistics:

Europe

  • In the European region of the EMEA, it is estimated that 128,000 people take their own life every year.
  • 2020 estimates rank the eastern European countries of Lithuania and Russia as being among the top five countries in the world for the highest suicide rates, with Lithuiana at 31.9 suicides per 100,000 and Russia at 31 suicides per 100,000.
  • A number of other eastern European countries have high suicide rates, including Belarus at 26.2 suicides per 100,000 and Suriname and Kazakhstan, both at approximately 22 suicides per 100,000.
  • In contrast, the only western European nation with a particularly high suicide rate is Belgium, which ranks at number eleven with 20.7 suicides per 100,000. However, Belgium has some of the world's most liberal laws on doctor-assisted suicide, which is likely to be a factor in these statistics.
  • In Europe, males have been found to have a disproportionately lower rate of suicide attempts and an excessively higher rate of suicides compared to females, supporting global statistics that suicide rates of men are approximately twice that of women.

Proposed next steps:

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As our initial research only touched upon gathering suicide statistics for the EMEA region of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa to include attempted suicides and any demographic differences between men and women on suicides and attempted suicides in these regions, we recommend continuing our research to now focus on the Middle East and Africa for a comprehensive report.
We also recommend additional research that will provide a psychographic profile of men and a psychographic profile of women within the EMEA region to better understand their reasons for attempting suicide that will include any data that is recent and publicly available on their: Values, opinions, attitudes, and lifestyles for a more in-depth report.