Year: 2009 Source: Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, v.33, no.1, (2009), p.67-69 SIEC No: 20090042

This article describes the causes of death codes assigned in Australian Bureau of Statistics mortality data to deaths in Australia from 2000-2005 that were coded as suicide in the National Coroners Information System. During the study period, 12,786 deaths recorded in the National Coroners Information System were assigned intentional self-harm as intent. Of these, 9,937 had been assigned ICD-10 underlying cause of death codes in the range normally reported as suicide. Findings confirm routine mortality data have underestimated suicide mortality in Australia in recent years probably due to incomplete coroner data being available to Australian Bureau of Statistics coders. (11 refs.)