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Suicide Prevention in Hong Kong 

Suicide Prevention in Hong Kong
Chapter:
Suicide Prevention in Hong Kong
Author(s):

Paul Yip

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198570059.003.0107
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date: 22 August 2019

Hong Kong, formerly a British Colony, returned to People’s Republic of China and has been a special administrative region of that country since 1997. In 2006, Hong Kong had a population of 6.9 million people with a living area of about 1000 square kilometres: it is one of the most densely populated areas on Earth. Economic development in Hong Kong has been impressive during the past two decades with a GDP of about 25,000 US dollars per year. However, Hong Kong’s suicide rate has increased from 9.6 to 18.6 deaths per 100,000 from 1981 to 2003, and is well above the global average of 14.5 per 100,000. In 2003, 1264 people committed suicide with an average of about 3.5 persons per day. It is the sixth leading cause of death, and has accounted for 3 per cent of the deaths annually. Moreover, suicide is the leading cause of death among the 15–24 age group, and the rate has increased by more than 70 per cent since 1997. Due to the increase in suicides among young people and adults, the proportion of life of years lost due to suicide has contributed to about 8 per cent of the total loss (Yip et al. 2005a). In 2003, the estimated loss of labour productivity on account of suicide was about US$175 million.

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