Table 2

Correlation coefficients: rates of suicide, firearm suicide, non-firearm suicide, lifetime major depression, lifetime suicidal thoughts and firearm ownership, US census regions

Suicide rateFirearm suicide rateNon-firearm suicide rateMajor depressionSuicidal thoughts
Rates of suicide, firearm suicide, and non-firearm suicide come from the National Center for Health Statistics.
Psychiatric disorder prevalence estimates by census region, 1991–92, come from the National Co-morbidity Study. Lifetime major depression (n=8098) and suicidal thoughts (that is, ever seriously considered suicide) (n=5877) were reported by 17% and 13% of respondents nationally. Mean household firearm and handgun ownership rates come from the General Social Surveys (1988–97).
Firearm suicide rate0.93
Non-firearm suicide rate0.27−0.12
Major depression0.00−0.180.43
Suicidal thoughts0.680.390.770.39
Household handgun prevalence0.590.83−0.57−0.10−0.01