Charcoal burning has emerged as a novel suicide method in Taiwan and its impact on maternal filicide-suicide (MFS) remains unexplored. Using official national mortality data and reports of MFS cases from electronic newspaper archives, the authors aimed to examine whether the newly available charcoal burning was associated with an increase in MFS incidents during the period from 1999 to 2006. The trends for changes in age/gender/method-specific suicide rates and MFS incidence were analyzed and then correlated with each other. The results indicated that charcoal burning was the leading method of filicide in reported MFS incidents. The increase in MFS incidents paralleled that of charcoal burning-specific suicide rates in females aged 25-44 years, while suicide rates by other methods did not change significantly. Easy accessibility and perceived painlessness as conveyed by the media might account for the choices of charcoal burning for MFS. Restricting access to charcoal burning should therefore be prioritized for further prevention strategies. © 2008 Elsevier & Formosan Medical Association.
Pan, Y. J., & Lee, M. B. (2008). Charcoal burning and maternal filicide-suicide trends in Taiwan: The impact of accessibility of lethal methods. Journal of the Formosan Medical Association, 107(10), 811–815. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0929-6646(08)60195-3