This project will examine the association between certain medications and suicidal behaviour to determine whether some antidepressants, or a combination of medication, leads to an increased risk of suicide.
We will also look at whether changes in employment status or financial circumstances affect suicidal behaviour.
The project provides an important opportunity to explore the benefits and usefulness of analysing linked administrative data and will contribute to the evidence base of research on suicide prevention, as well as informing policymakers and opportunities for intervention.
By linking pharmacy dispensing data, we will be able to examine the efficacy of medications in suicide prevention, and therefore improve treatment for those at risk.
Exploring employment status and financial circumstances will also provide essential background characteristics of people who take their own lives, which will inform interventions for suicide prevention and will help health service planners to formulate mental health policies and care plans.
There is also considerable interest among policymakers around the development of interventions aimed at particular population sub-groups.