Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Insulation from public pressure leads to more accurate suicide reporting by death investigators

Date:
August 19, 2011
Source:
Temple University
Summary:
Medical examiners and appointed coroners are less likely to under-report suicides than are elected coroners, that's according to a new study.

Medical examiners and appointed coroners are less likely to under-report suicides than are elected coroners, that's according to a new study from Temple University.

Many of us view suicide as an intensely private and personal act and commonly seek to explain it by focusing on the mental and emotional health of the individual. However, because suicides tend to cluster in specific populations and places, sociologists are very interested in how social contexts can affect a person's propensity to commit suicide.

In order to examine those social contexts, however, researchers must rely on official death reporting. "Mortality statistics are crucial because they tell us not just about how people die, but how they lived. To understand the social determinants of health and well-being at the community level, we need to be confident that area-level mortality statistics are relatively unbiased," said Temple sociologist Joshua Klugman, the study's lead author.

So Klugman, along with his Temple sociology colleagues Gretchen Condran and Matt Wray, set out to answer the question: Does the type of office responsible for reporting on deaths impact the suicide rates, potentially biasing estimates of the social causes of suicide, such as income or divorce rates?

Specifically, in a study presented next week at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association in Las Vegas, Klugman analyzed reported suicide rates in counties with elected coroners, appointed coroners and appointed medical examiners.

Klugman found that elected coroners have slightly lower official suicide rates than medical examiners (all of whom are appointed) and appointed coroners.

"Contrary to arguments that medical examiners' greater scientific training makes them more likely to underreport suicides, we conclude that medical examiners and appointed coroners demonstrate less suicide under-reporting due to their insulation from public pressure," said Klugman.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Temple University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Temple University. "Insulation from public pressure leads to more accurate suicide reporting by death investigators." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110819141527.htm>.
Temple University. (2011, August 19). Insulation from public pressure leads to more accurate suicide reporting by death investigators. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110819141527.htm
Temple University. "Insulation from public pressure leads to more accurate suicide reporting by death investigators." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110819141527.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Portable Breathalyzer Gets You Home Safely

Portable Breathalyzer Gets You Home Safely

Buzz60 (Oct. 21, 2014) Breeze, a portable breathalyzer, gets you home safely by instantly showing your blood alcohol content, and with one tap, lets you call an Uber, a cab or a friend from your contact list to pick you up. Sean Dowling (@SeanDowlingTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Movies Might Desensitize Violence For Parents, Not Just Kids

Movies Might Desensitize Violence For Parents, Not Just Kids

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A study suggests that parents become desensitized to violent movies as well as children, which leads them to allow their kids to view violent films. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins