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Suicide of Australians during the Vietnam War

Pridmore, S ORCID: 0000-0002-9170-1798, Ahmadi, J and Pridmore, W 2018 , 'Suicide of Australians during the Vietnam War' , Australasian Psychiatry, vol. 26, no. 2 , pp. 149-151 , doi: 10.1177/1039856217734740.

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Objectives: National suicide rates fall during times of war. This fits with the notion of the population comingtogether against a common foe. But, what happens in the case of a war which is not fully supported, which drawsthe population and families apart? We consider this question by examining the Australian suicide rates during thedivisive Vietnam War.Methods: We graphed and examined the Australian suicide figures for 1921–2010.Results: We found clear evidence of a decrease in the suicide rate for World War II (consistent with other studies),but a marked elevation of suicide during the Vietnam War.Conclusions: The elevation of the Australian suicide rate during the Vietnam War is consistent with Durkheim’ssocial integration model – when social integration is lessened, either by individual characteristics or societal characteristics,the risk of suicide rises.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Pridmore, S and Ahmadi, J and Pridmore, W
Keywords: suicide, suicide prevention, war, social integration model
Journal or Publication Title: Australasian Psychiatry
Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN: 1039-8562
DOI / ID Number: 10.1177/1039856217734740
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists

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