ISSN 1225-8709 (Print)
ISSN 2005-7571 (Online)
Volume 25, Number 3 (3/2018)
Original Article <page. 72-8 >

A Study on Factors Affecting Suicidal Tendency of the Elderly Living Alone on Care Services

Hwoyeon Seo, MD1,2;Jee Hoon Sohn, PhD1;Sung Jun Cho, PhD3,4;Su Jeong Sung, PhD5;Maeng Je Cho, PhD6; and Seung Hee Ahn, MSW2;

1;Seoul National University Hospital Public Health Medical Service, Seoul, 2;JongnoGu Community Mental Health Center, Seoul, 3;Department of Psychiatry, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, 4;Seoul Mental Health Center, Seoul, 5;Department of Psychiatry, Hallym University Kangdong Sacred Heart Hospital, Seoul, 6;Seoul National University, College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea

Objectives : The high suicide rate has risen as a main concern in South Korea. Given the complexity of the mechanism resulting in complete suicide, studies targeting various populations are needed for broader understanding of its risk factors. This study aims to analyze the factors affecting the suicidal tendency in the population of the elderly living alone in Seoul depending on basic elderly-care services.

Methods : A total number of 415 people participated in the study. Home-visit interviews were administered by trained interviewers. Suicidal tendency was measured by the Korean version of mini international neuropsychiatric interview (K-MINI). Health-related quality of life was measured by a brief version of the World Health Organization Quality-of-life Scale (WHOQOL-BREF). Alcohol problem was assessed by the Korean version of the alcohol use disorders identification test (AUDIT-K). Among total subjects of 415 interviewees, the actual responses of 408 people were used for the final analysis.

Results : The result showed that the suicide risk was high in persons isolated from social support [odds ratio (OR) = 4.49], having depression (OR = 14.85), and having low quality of life (OR = 4.39).

Conclusions : We found that social support, depression and health-related quality of life are associated with suicidal tendency in the elderly living alone on basic services. Our evidence will contribute to suicide prevention policy for the elderly living alone on care services.

Key words : The elderly living alone;Suicide;Depression;Social connectedness.


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