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October 2021

A comparison of suicide in two Irish counties

Author(s): Cullen, A., Walsh, D., McGauran, S., Phelan, D.

Journal/Book: Irish J Psychol Med. 1999; 16: Irish J Psychol Medicine Brendans Hospital, Rathdown Rd, Dublin 7, Ireland. Irish Inst Psychological Medicine Ltd. 136-139.

Abstract: Objectives: To determine to what extent official suicide rates in counties Kildare and Mayo underestimate the rates as clinically determined, and to examine and compare the association between the sociodemographic characteristics of the two Irish counties and trends in the suicide rates. Method: Populations for the two counties for the years 1988-1934 were calculated. Official suicide mortality data was obtained from the Central Statistics Office. Following examination of the coroners' files for both counties the number of suicides was estimated using clinical criteria. Results: Neither county showed a significant change in suicide mortality over time from 1988-1994. Suicide was underestimated in official mortality data for each county. There were significant differences in the choice of method of suicide with an excess of drowning in Mayo and of shooting in Kildare. Mayo suicides were more likely to be single and unemployed. Conclusions: Much local research is needed before implementing suicide prevention programmes due to the many demographic differences and differences in traditions and choice of method of suicide that exist between counties.

Note: Article Connolly JF, St Marys Hosp, Castlebar, Co Mayo, IRELAND

Keyword(s): suicide rates; sociodemographic factors; trends; rural; IRELAND

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