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Suicides at workplace on rise, finds study

Suicides at workplace on rise, finds study
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Suicides At Workplace On Rise, Finds Study. Workplace suicide cases are on the rise and people belonging to specific occupations like law enforcement,...

Workplace suicide cases are on the rise and people belonging to specific occupations like law enforcement, agriculture, medicine and the armed forces are at higher suicide risk than others, finds a US-based study.

The highest workplace suicide rate is in protective services occupations (5.3 per 1 million), the study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine said.

The increased suicide risk among specific occupations is the availability and access to lethal means, such as drugs for medical doctors and firearms for law enforcement officers.

Workplace stressors and economic factors have also been found to be linked with suicide in these occupations.

"Occupation can largely define a person's identity, and psychological risk factors for suicide, such as depression and stress, can be affected by the workplace," said lead investigator Hope M. Tiesman, epidemiologist with the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

"The workplace should be considered a potential site to implement suicide-prevention programmes and train managers in the detection of suicidal behaviour, especially among the high-risk occupations identified in this paper," he added.

This study compared workplace versus non-workplace suicides in the US between 2003 and 2010, using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Census of Fatal Occupational Injury database.

Following protective services workers, among whom are firefighters and law enforcement officers, individuals working in farming, fishing, and forestry occupations had the second highest suicide rate (5.1 per one million).

Those in installation, maintenance, and repair occupations also had high workplace suicide rates (3.3 per one million).

Although a subject of major concern, suicide within the military was excluded from this analysis because the primary data sources used for the study did not include statistics on military personnel.

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