Report: Young Men Increasingly Dying From Suicide, Violence, Accidents

Apr 1, 2011, 4:34 PM

Over the last half century, the worldwide health community has made significant gains in decreasing the impact of communicable diseases.

But those gains are being eroded in one demographic group by suicide, violence and accidents.

Young men worldwide are increasingly dying from these causes, according to a new epidemiologic study released this week in The Lancet.

There is some good news, though. Researchers — using World Health Organization data from fifty countries — found that death rates for young children (those under 14) and young women (age 15-24) declined considerably between 1955 and 2004.

Other notable findings include:

  • By the late 1970s, injury (including suicide, violence and accidents) was the dominant cause of death for young men age 15-24.
  • Death rates from injury for men in this age group increased to one-quarter to one-third of deaths between 2000 and 2004.
  • Deaths in children under five are down, the result of public health efforts to prevent and treat communicable diseases.


In the U.S., next week’s National Public Health Week will help shine light on these issues. The week includes an increased focus on injury prevention including suicide, violence and accidents.

The American Public Health Association has put together a toolkit with more information on injury prevention.

WEIGH IN: Has your community faced these issues? How can communities work to reduce deaths among young men?

This commentary originally appeared on the RWJF New Public Health blog.