Evaluation of suicide prevention activities

7.4 Higher risk groups

Page last updated: January 2014

A summary of the higher risk groups identified in the peer-reviewed literature is as follows.

A number of at-risk sub-groups have been identified.54 These include but are not limited to:

  • people with physical illness
  • people with a history of suicide related behaviour or self-harm
  • people with mental illness
  • Indigenous populations
  • men
  • people with substance misuse problems
  • rural and remote populations
  • youth
  • people who have been bereaved by suicide
  • people engaged with the justice system
  • lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and intersex (LGBTI) populations
  • Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) populations
  • older adults
  • people who are divorced, widowed, separated or single
  • people who are unemployed or with low socioeconomic status
  • people who are socially isolated or who lack social support

Note. The preceding list is formatted as table 7-3 in the original PDF document. However, it is really only a list.

Given the higher prevalence of suicide in these groups, it makes sense that suicide prevention strategies include a focus on these populations.

The NSPP-funded projects include a focus on most of the target groups listed above, albeit with some jurisdictional gaps as identified in Section 7.1. While other higher risk groups, such as people who are divorced, widowed, separated or single, or people who are unemployed are not specifically listed as targets for any of the projects, it is reasonable to assume that they will be covered by a number of projects.

Key findings

Overall, NSPP-funded projects address most of the recognised target groups. Some gaps are evident at state/territory level in terms of the number of projects and the reported coverage of higher risk groups.

54 DoHA, LIFE: Research and Evidence in Suicide Prevention.