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Ukraine set to act on high suicide burden
  1. D L Nordstrom
  1. Correspondence to:
 D L Nordstrom
 Department of Radiology, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, 600 Highland Av, E1/330, Madison, WI 53792, USA; Dnordstrom{at}


Having survived multiple catastrophes in the 20th century, newly independent Ukraine now has some of the highest injury death rates in Europe. The nation’s most common type of injury death is suicide, and its rate is one of Europe’s and the world’s highest. Alcohol abuse occurs in 20% of men, and major depression in 20% of women. Suicide is the leading cause of death in the Ukrainian Army, which has begun to recognize and address the problem. Mental health is one of three current priorities of the Ukrainian Ministry of Public Health. The government is developing a mental health policy and plan, with potential for prevention of suicide. A national university in the capital has created a graduate school of public health to build human capacity to prevent and control disease and injury.

  • Ukraine
  • mental health
  • suicide

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  • Funding: This work was carried out under a 2006–2007 US State Department Fulbright Scholar Award in Kyiv, Ukraine.

  • Competing interests: None.