Malaysia Has Recorded About 4 Suicide Cases A Day In The First 3 Months Of 2021

Suicide cases reported to police in the first quarter this year alone are more than half of the total cases in 2020.

Cover image via Sam Fong/The Edge Markets & NBC News

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Malaysia recorded 336 suicide cases in the first three months of the year alone, an average of about four cases a day

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah made the revelation by citing data from the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) yesterday, 29 June, reported Free Malaysia Today.

In a statement, Noor Hisham said the figure for the suicide cases between January and March is more than half of the total reported cases in 2020.

Based on police data, he said there were 631 suicide cases in 2020, an increase from 2019 which recorded 609 cases.

Image for illustration purposes only.

Image via Colchester Gazette

In the first quarter of 2021, parts of the country were put under the Movement Control Order (MCO) — dubbed MCO 2.0 — beginning 13 January before the restriction expanded to more areas and eventually phased out by 3 March.

However, the country is back under a total lockdown since 1 June.

The health-director general said the COVID-19 pandemic has a huge impact on individuals' mental health all over the world, and Malaysia is no exception

"Some individuals have a higher risk of suffering from mental health issues including depression, especially when under tremendous stress or when isolated from a support network of friends and family," The Star quoted him as saying.

Noor Hisham warned that if the depression is not addressed or treated, the individual will have a risk of developing suicidal behaviour.

He said the behavioral changes may include expressing a sense of hopelessness or feeling as if their presence was a burden to their family and talking about wanting to end their lives either verbally or in writing.

"Therefore, the public is urged to be more aware of family members and people around them who may display signs of depression that could lead to suicide," he continued.

The country's top doctor said individuals displaying the symptoms must seek professional help immediately.

He also advised others to help such individuals by communicating effectively and listening to their grievances with empathy and without being judgmental.

Additionally, Noor Hisham stressed that media play an important role in ethical reporting on suicide

He also urged members of the public to respect the victim's family by not recording any videos or distributing photos on social media about the individual who died by suicide.

"Spreading such videos on social media might encourage individuals with risk to emulate and commit copycat suicides,” said Noor Hisham.

Asking for help is not a sign of weakness.

If you or anyone you know is lonely, distressed, or having negative thoughts, please call these Malaysian hotlines:

Contact: +603-76272929
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter


Contact: 15999
WhatsApp: +6019-2615999
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook 


Daily (12pm - 12am)
Contact: 1800-18-2327
Email: [email protected]
Facebook | Instagram

For a more thorough directory of resources, head over to the Malaysian Mental Health Association's website.

If you know someone who struggles with depression or suicidal thoughts, here are ways you can help:

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