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J Forensic Sci. 2012 Mar;57(2):391-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1556-4029.2011.01978.x. Epub 2011 Dec 8.

Global functioning and suicide among Chinese rural population aged 15-34 years: a psychological autopsy case-control study.

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School of Public Health, Shandong University, Jinan, Shandong, China.


As the relationship between global functioning and young suicide remains unclear in rural China, this study was aimed to explore the relationship between them. Data of 391 rural suicides and 416 controls, all aged 15-34 years in three provinces in China were used for this study. The Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scale was adopted to assess global functioning of suicides and controls. The results showed that GAF score was stronger than mental illness in predicting suicide in China. Different correlates of GAF score were found between suicides and controls. Unsurprisingly, GAF score was significantly correlated with mental illness in both suicides and controls. Different characteristics were also found among three types of suicide which were classified using GAF score. Assessing global functioning is useful and GAF scale should be regularly used in suicide prevention practice.

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