Survey: Katrina Survivors Find Extra Strength to Avoid Suicide

AP: “A new study finds that very few survivors of Hurricane Katrina contemplated suicide despite the extreme conditions they faced.

While the survivors suffered twice as much mental illness as the pre-storm population, they contemplated suicide far less often than mentally ill people surveyed before Katrina.The study, led by Ronald Kessler of Harvard University, found only one percent of these troubled survivors either thought about or planned for suicide. Before Katrina, eight percent of mentally ill people from the same region had such thoughts and four percent made plans to carry out suicide. Researchers credit a surprisingly powerful inner strength.

The study results are reported in the online Bulletin of the World Health Organization and in a paper to the National Institute of Mental Health, which funded the study.”

View WHO report (pdf)