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Suicide Overall and Suicide by Pesticide Rates among South Korean Workers: A 15-Year Population-Based Study

  • kim, yangwoo
  • min, jeehee
  • lee, soo-jin
Publication Date
Dec 03, 2019
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Suicide is a major public health concern in South Korea, and self-poisoning by pesticides is one of the common methods of suicide. Pesticide ban policies have been successful for suicide prevention / however, no studies have shown their effect according to occupational groups. The present study analyzed suicide and suicide by pesticide rates among South Korean workers aged 15&ndash / 64 in 2003&ndash / 2017, their associations with occupational groups, and the impact of three major economic indices on these factors. Workers in the agriculture, forestry, and fishery industries had relative risks of 5.62 (95% CI: 5.54&ndash / 5.69) for suicide overall and 25.49 (95% CI: 24.46&ndash / 26.57) for suicide by pesticide. The real gross domestic product had a positive association with suicide overall only in the last five-year period investigated in this study, and the unemployment rate consistently had a positive association. The economic status and policy for suicide prevention affected suicide and suicide by pesticide rates differently among occupational groups and different time periods. Policy addressing suicidal risk for different occupational groups should be of concern in South Korea.

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