Tag Archives: Ethnicity

Ethnic differences in suicide behavior in Singapore

Mak, K. K., Ho, C. S., Chua, V., & Ho, R. C. (2014). Ethnic differences in suicide behavior in Singapore. Transcultural psychiatry, 52(1): 3-17. doi: 10.1177/136346151454354

This study examined the ethnic differences in stressors, risk, and protective factors among people who attempted suicide in Singapore. A retrospective chart review of 626 attempted suicide cases at a hospital in Singapore between 2004 and 2006 collected information on diagnosis according to DSM-IV-TR criteria. Chi-square tests was used to compare the sociodemographic characteristics, stressors, risk factors, and protective factors among Chinese, Malay, Indian, and other ethnic groups. Logistic regression was used to determine the odds ratios of having two or more stressors, risk factors, or protective factors for the four ethnic groups. Women were more likely than men to attempt suicide, although they also were more likely to have two or more suicide protective factors than men. In general, older people were more likely to have two or more suicide risk factors than the younger groups. Ethnic differences were found in history of psychiatric illnesses and unemployment among the risk factors, and for most of the protective factors, but none of the stressors. Indians were more likely to have two or more protective factors than were Chinese (OR of 7.74, 95% CI [1.04, 8.72]. Future suicide prevention programs should target young adults and strengthen the protective factors among different ethnic groups.