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German doctors condemn internet TV series depicting teenage suicide

BMJ 2017; 358 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j3367 (Published 11 July 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;358:j3367
  1. Ned Stafford
  1. Hamburg

Two psychiatric societies and a paediatrics association in Germany have condemned a new internet television series about a 17 year old girl who dies by suicide, saying that the series could trigger so called copycat suicides among troubled young viewers.

Although the societies are only “urgently advising” vulnerable young people to avoid viewing the series, Germany’s Professional Association of Paediatricians (BVKJ) has called for the “immediate cancellation” of the series.

A member of the association’s board, the paediatric cardiologist Josef Kahl, said that “adolescents contemplating suicide will probably be influenced in that direction by the series.” He added, “As the series shows how a suicide can be done successfully, we demand that the series be banned.”

The 13 part series, called 13 Reasons Why, was …

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