Year: 2001 Source: BMJ, v.323, no.7306, (July 28, 2001), p.207-208 SIEC No: 20010990

This study investigated mortality among all children in Finland who were taken into care between January 1991-December 1997 (n=13,371). During the study period 106 individuals died. In this cohort, both sexes had higher mortality than would be expected on the basis of general population figures. The higher mortality was related to deaths caused by substance misuse, accidents, & suicide. Six females & 29 males aged 15-24 committed suicide with mortality ratios of 353 & 242 respectively. It is concluded the system fails to protect adolescents from self-endangering behaviour both within the system & during adaptation to independent living. Results indicate a need for continuing attention during the transition period from foster care to independence. (5 refs.)