Number of elderly people committing suicide in Singapore reaches record high
With persistently low birth rates and longer lifespans, affluent Singapore is grappling with a rapidly ageing population which has been described as a ticking "demographic time bomb".
The number of elderly people committing suicide in Singapore reached a record high last year, a non-government group said today, urging stronger support for the over 60s in the rapidly aging city-state.
Samaritans of Singapore (SOS), which focuses on preventing suicides, said fear of becoming a burden to the family, social disconnection, physical impairment and deteriorating mental health is the most common challenges faced by the elderly.
SOS said in a statement posted on its website that the number of people aged 60 and above who took their own lives in 2017 rose to 129, which was the highest on record and accounted for nearly 36 percent of that year's total suicides.
"The aging population in Singapore is set to bring more challenges to current available social support services. There is an imminent need for stronger support networks as the number of elderly Singapore residents living alone continues to increase."
Other developed nations also face challenges due to ageing populations. Japan said last month it plans to bring in more foreign workers to tackle a serious labour shortage caused by the country's ageing, shrinking population.
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