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Article: The evolution of the epidemic of charcoal-burning suicide in Taiwan: A spatial and temporal analysis

TitleThe evolution of the epidemic of charcoal-burning suicide in Taiwan: A spatial and temporal analysis
Authors
Issue Date2010
PublisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://medicine.plosjournals.org/perlserv/?request=index-html&issn=1549-1676
Citation
Plos Medicine, 2010, v. 7 n. 1, article no. e1000212 How to Cite?
AbstractBackground: An epidemic of carbon monoxide poisoning suicide by burning barbecue charcoal has occurred in East Asia in the last decade. We investigated the spatial and temporal evolution of the epidemic to assess its impact on the epidemiology of suicide in Taiwan. Methods and Findings: Age-standardised rates of suicide and undetermined death by charcoal burning were mapped across townships (median population aged 15 y or over = 27,000) in Taiwan for the periods 1999-2001, 2002-2004, and 2005-2007. Smoothed standardised mortality ratios of charcoal-burning and non-charcoal-burning suicide and undetermined death across townships were estimated using Bayesian hierarchical models. Trends in overall and method-specific rates were compared between urban and rural areas for the period 1991-2007. The epidemic of charcoalburning suicide in Taiwan emerged more prominently in urban than rural areas, without a single point of origin, and rates of charcoal-burning suicide remained highest in the metropolitan regions throughout the epidemic. The rural excess in overall suicide rates prior to 1998 diminished as rates of charcoal-burning suicide increased to a greater extent in urban than rural areas. Conclusions: The charcoal-burning epidemic has altered the geography of suicide in Taiwan. The observed pattern and its changes in the past decade suggest that widespread media coverage of this suicide method and easy access to barbecue charcoal may have contributed to the epidemic. Prevention strategies targeted at these factors, such as introducing and enforcing guidelines on media reporting and restricting access to charcoal, may help tackle the increase of charcoal-burning suicides. © 2010 Chang et al.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/145494
ISSN
2011 Impact Factor: 16.269
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 5.667
PubMed Central ID
ISI Accession Number ID
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Taiwanese government ( the Government Funds of the Ministry of Education)
Higher Education Funding Council for England
University of Bristol
Funding Information:

The authors received no specific funding for the study. We wish to acknowledge the support for S-SC's PhD study from the Taiwanese government ( the Government Funds of the Ministry of Education), the Higher Education Funding Council for England ( Overseas Research Scholarship), and University of Bristol ( University of Bristol Postgraduate Research Scholarship). DG is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Senior Investigator.

References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorChang, SSen_HK
dc.contributor.authorGunnell, Den_HK
dc.contributor.authorWheeler, BWen_HK
dc.contributor.authorYip, Pen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSterne, JACen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2012-02-23T12:11:46Z-
dc.date.available2012-02-23T12:11:46Z-
dc.date.issued2010en_HK
dc.identifier.citationPlos Medicine, 2010, v. 7 n. 1, article no. e1000212en_HK
dc.identifier.issn1549-1277en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/145494-
dc.description.abstractBackground: An epidemic of carbon monoxide poisoning suicide by burning barbecue charcoal has occurred in East Asia in the last decade. We investigated the spatial and temporal evolution of the epidemic to assess its impact on the epidemiology of suicide in Taiwan. Methods and Findings: Age-standardised rates of suicide and undetermined death by charcoal burning were mapped across townships (median population aged 15 y or over = 27,000) in Taiwan for the periods 1999-2001, 2002-2004, and 2005-2007. Smoothed standardised mortality ratios of charcoal-burning and non-charcoal-burning suicide and undetermined death across townships were estimated using Bayesian hierarchical models. Trends in overall and method-specific rates were compared between urban and rural areas for the period 1991-2007. The epidemic of charcoalburning suicide in Taiwan emerged more prominently in urban than rural areas, without a single point of origin, and rates of charcoal-burning suicide remained highest in the metropolitan regions throughout the epidemic. The rural excess in overall suicide rates prior to 1998 diminished as rates of charcoal-burning suicide increased to a greater extent in urban than rural areas. Conclusions: The charcoal-burning epidemic has altered the geography of suicide in Taiwan. The observed pattern and its changes in the past decade suggest that widespread media coverage of this suicide method and easy access to barbecue charcoal may have contributed to the epidemic. Prevention strategies targeted at these factors, such as introducing and enforcing guidelines on media reporting and restricting access to charcoal, may help tackle the increase of charcoal-burning suicides. © 2010 Chang et al.en_HK
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherPublic Library of Science. The Journal's web site is located at http://medicine.plosjournals.org/perlserv/?request=index-html&issn=1549-1676en_HK
dc.relation.ispartofPLoS Medicineen_HK
dc.titleThe evolution of the epidemic of charcoal-burning suicide in Taiwan: A spatial and temporal analysisen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.emailChang, SS: sschang@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.emailYip, P: sfpyip@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityChang, SS=rp01582en_HK
dc.identifier.authorityYip, P=rp00596en_HK
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_versionen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1371/journal.pmed.1000212en_HK
dc.identifier.pmid20052273-
dc.identifier.pmcidPMC2794367-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-75749126145en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros215778-
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-75749126145&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume7en_HK
dc.identifier.issue1en_HK
dc.identifier.eissn1549-1676-
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000274162800012-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Statesen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridChang, SS=35232386600en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridGunnell, D=7006194937en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridWheeler, BW=7102860699en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridYip, P=7102503720en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSterne, JAC=7006014653en_HK

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