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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 7-12

Media and suicidality during the surge of Thai student suicides in 2019: A hospital-based study

Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Songkhla, Thailand

Correspondence Address:
Chonnakarn Jatchavala
Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Songkhla
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jms.jms_29_21

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Background: During the 2 months of February and March 2019, more than 10 Thai university students were official reported to have committed suicide, which may impact on others' suicidality. Aims: This study aims to examine media and other factors influenced suicidal ideation among Thai university students, during the crisis of suicidal height in March–April 2019. Methods: The study was of a retrospective and cross-sectional design. Patients, who were university students and accessed the psychiatric outpatient clinic in March–April 2019, were recruited. Data collected by the hospital's databased system included patient profiles, perceptions of media influencing suicidality, and the Thai version of the suicide screening test. Results: Of the 68 participants, most participants were female (75.0%). They mostly stated that they were at a high risk of suicide (35.0%); whereas those who reported that the media influenced them were shown to have 3.5 times, higher risk of suicide (P = 0.012). Moreover, the moderate risk of suicide was statistically significantly associated with media, while other variables did not associate with suicidal risk (P = 0.03). Conclusion: During the crisis of copycat suicides, among Thai university students; most of whom were psychiatric outpatients, were at high risk for suicide. In addition, those who reported that the media had influenced them demonstrated a higher risk of suicide. Moreover, those who were at moderate risk for suicide were significantly associated with media.

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