Trends in suicide in Japan by gender during the COVID-19 pandemic, up to September 2020

Psychiatry Res. 2021 Jan;295:113622. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2020.113622. Epub 2020 Dec 1.


Suicide is an extreme consequence of the psychological burden associated with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) counter-measures. A quasi-Poisson regression was applied to monthly suicide mortality data obtained from the National Police Agency to estimate the gender-specific excess/exiguous suicide deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan up to September 2020. We found excess suicide deaths among women in July, August and September, but not among men. Our results indicate the importance of COVID-19 related suicide prevention, especially for women. Timely access to mental health care and financial and social support is urgently needed, as is optimal treatment for mental illness.

Keywords: COVID-19; Japan; suicide.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • COVID-19*
  • Cause of Death / trends*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Pandemics
  • Sex Factors
  • Suicide, Completed / statistics & numerical data*
  • Suicide, Completed / trends