Crowds of people walking through a street

Australian Bureau of Statistics
Causes of Death
data for 2018


The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has released the Causes of Death data for 2018. The data shows that 3,046 people died from suicide, which is a 2.7% decrease on last year.

In 2018, suicide was again ranked as the 13th leading cause of death, equal to 2017 data. All states except for NSW recorded a decrease. NSW also recorded the highest number of suicide deaths overall.

Suicide remained the leading cause of death among people aged 15 to 44 years. Men remained more than three times more likely to die by suicide than women, at 76.2% of all suicide deaths.

All intentional self-harm deaths had co-morbidities mentioned as contributing factors to death. Mood disorders, including depression, were present in almost 44% of deaths.

On the Line CEO Kim O’Neill said, “It is encouraging that the latest data shows a reduction in deaths from intentional self-harm in the past year, but the numbers remind us that suicide remains a major issue in our society.”

“We cannot rest – everyone has a role to play in increasing understanding, awareness and providing support options to people who are going through a tough time. The reduction in deaths year-on-year is a testament to the efforts of a great many people and organisations that are working to reduce the number of people we lose to suicide, but there is still much work to be done.”

“These statistics are a reminder to all that we need to be vigilant and constantly grow our efforts to reach people who need support. We also need to empower people’s support networks of friends, family and acquaintances to recognise when someone may be going through a tough time and how they can offer support and understanding.”


If you or someone you know needs support, please reach out to one of our counselling services.

Suicide Call Back Service – 1300 659 467

SuicideLine Victoria – 1300 651 251

Our professional counsellors are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If it is an emergency, dial 000.