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Causes of death in 2015 data released by ABS

Causes of death in 2015 data released by ABS

Suicide remained the leading cause of premature death in Australia in 2015, according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The ABS report Causes of Death, Australia, 2015 shows that death by suicide occurred at a rate of 12.6 per 100,000 people, an increase on that recorded in 2014 of 12.0 per 100,000 people.

Chair of the National Mental Health Commission, Allan Fels, said the new ABS data highlighted the importance of suicide prevention programs.

“Every life lost through suicide is a loss to the entire community,” he said.

“This new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics strengthens the need for agencies across the public, private and not for profit sectors to continue to work together to find effective, personalised and localised solutions.

“A special focus is needed for the most at risk groups including young people, residents of remote and rural areas, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“Whenever and wherever it can, the National Mental Health Commission will provide insight, advice and evidence to continuously improve Australia’s mental health and suicide prevention systems and act as a catalyst for change to achieve these improvements,” Professor Fels said.

The Advisory Group for Suicide Prevention is a nationally representative committee co-chaired by Lucy Brogden, a commissioner with the National Mental Health Commission and Sharon Jones from Relationships Australia Tasmania.

Established in response to a request in December 2015 by the federal Minister for Health, Sussan Ley, the new advisory group provides advice, expertise and strategic support for suicide prevention across Australia by identifying priorities and promoting action.

Aboriginal flag Torres Strait Islander flag

Acknowledgement of Country

The Commission acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands throughout Australia.
We pay our respects to their clans, and to the elders, past present and emerging, and acknowledge their continuing connection to land, sea and community.


The Commission is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. The Commission welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Lived Experience

We acknowledge the individual and collective contributions of those with a lived and living experience of mental ill-health and suicide, and those who love, have loved and care for them. Each person’s journey is unique and a valued contribution to Australia’s commitment to mental health suicide prevention systems reform.