The Evolution of Epidemic Suicide on Guam: Context and Contagion

  • Booth H
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Abstract

Thirty years of suicide rates for Guam were analyzed by age, sex, period, and cohort. Youth suicide increased rapidly in the 1990s; certain cohorts have higher rates. Four explanatory factors are discussed, including ecological factors and migration from the Federated States of Micronesia. Direct and indirect suicide contagion followed the death by suicide of a respected politician, strongly influencing period and cohort patterns. Suicide pacts inflated suicide among young people. These factors acted in combination to produce epidemic levels of suicide in the 1990s.

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Authors

  • Heather Booth

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