Suicide Rate is 2x Higher for Black Children: Compendium from NYS Suicide Prevention Community Initiative

NYAPRS Note: Here’s an extraordinary collection of suicide related resources thank to Garra Lloyd-Lester of Director, NYS Suicide Prevention Community Initiative who writes “some high profile losses in the news this week coupled with the recent CDC report. This work can be very rewarding but can also be filled with moments of sadness that might impact us all in different ways. Hope everyone takes time for self-care and connecting with the what and who that keeps you safe.” Thank you Garra.

  1. Suicide rates rose in all but one state between 1999 and 2016, with increases seen across age, gender, race and ethnicity, according to a report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In more than half of all deaths in 27 states, the individuals had no known mental health condition when they took their own life.
    In North Dakota, the rate jumped more than 57 percent. In the most recent period studied (2014 to 2016), the rate was highest in Montana at 29.2 per 100,000 residents, compared with the national average of 13.4 per 100,000.
    Only Nevada recorded a decline — of 1 percent — for the overall period, though its rate remained higher than the national average.
    Increasingly, suicide is being seen as not just a mental health problem but a public health one. Nearly 45,000 suicides occurred in the United States in 2016 — more than twice the number of homicides — making it the 10th-leading cause of death. Among people ages 15 to 34, suicide is the second-leading cause of death.
    Overall, the most common method used was firearms.
    “The data are disturbing,” said Anne Schuchat, the CDC's principal deputy director. “The widespread nature of the increase, in every state but one, really suggests that this is a national problem hitting most communities.”
    Complete article at:
  2. Two press releases regarding the suicides this week of Kate Spade and Antony Bourdain
  3. AGE-RELATED RACIAL DISPARITY IN SUICIDE RATES AMONG U.S. YOUTH; NIH-FUNDED STUDY SUGGESTS NEED FOR MORE RESEARCH INTO CONTRIBUTING FACTORS; TARGETED INTERVENTIONS FOR CHILDREN New research suggests the suicide rate is roughly two times higher for black children ages 5-12 compared with white children of the same age group. The study, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), appeared online May 21 in JAMA Pediatrics. Suicide is a major public health problem and a leading cause of death in the United States (U.S.). While suicide among young children is quite rare, it can be devastating to families, friends, and communities. Past patterns of national youth suicide rates revealed higher rates for white compared to black youth.
  4. METHOD TO IDENTIFY UNDETECTED DRUG SUICIDES WINS TOP NIDA ADDICTION SCIENCE AWARD A project that identified and tested a bioinformatics program that can help identify underreported suicides linked to drug overdoses was awarded the first-place distinction at the 2018 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair — the world’s largest science competition for high school students. The awards are coordinated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and Friends of NIDA, a coalition that supports NIDA’s mission.
  5. REQUEST FOR INFORMATION ON HEALTH INNOVATIONS FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION The VA Center for Compassionate Care Innovation wants to hear from internal and external stakeholders about treatments focused on reducing the risk and/or incidence of suicide, as well as reducing risk factors significantly correlated with suicide such as chronic pain, depression, and substance abuse. Responses will be used to gain a better understanding of emerging therapies in the health care industry that support VA priorities such as reducing the number of Veteran suicides. Responses accepted through June 18, 2018.
  6. Deaths by Suicide and Firearms Are Rising Sharply Among Kids
    After years of progress, deaths by suicide, homicide and other means of injury are way up among kids, according to new data from the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics.
    The overall death rate for children between ages 10 and 19 fell by 33% between 1999 and 2013. But from 2013 to 2016, the report says, it crept back up by 12% — in large part because of a sizable increase in injury deaths, a category that includes deaths by suicide, homicide and unintentional injuries or accidents. For complete article go to:
  7. New study links low gun suicide rate with strict gun laws
    WASHINGTON - New York has the third lowest gun suicide rate in the United States, which a gun violence-prevention advocacy group attributes to its tight gun laws.
    A study by the Violence Policy Center found that states with relatively lax gun laws - like Montana and West Virginia - have some of the highest suicide rates in the country. Gun-violence experts said the findings show that overall suicide rates could drop if gun laws were tightened. For complete article go to:
  8. Red Flag Laws Are Linked To Declines In Gun Suicides, New Study Finds
    The research on data from Connecticut and Indiana could bolster the case for red flag laws, which advocates say can also be used to stop other types of shootings.
    Gun suicides declined significantly in two states after they passed laws allowing police to temporarily confiscate firearms from individuals determined to be a threat to themselves or others, according to new research.
    A study published Friday in the journal Psychiatric Services examined years of death data following the passage of “red flag” laws in Connecticut, which became the first state to enact this sort of law in 1999, and Indiana, which followed suit in 2005. For complete article go to:
  9. Battling Depression And Suicide Among Female Veterans
    The suicide rate for female veterans has soared 85 percent in recent years, leading the military, VA and advocacy groups to try new ways to improve women's mental health care during and after service.
    One key focus: how to tailor the sometimes tricky jump from the military to the civilian world.
    Women's experiences in the military are different from men's, so their transition needs to be different, too, said retired Army Col. Ellen Haring, director of research for the advocacy group Service Women's Action Network (SWAN). For complete article go to:
  10. Following A Positive Suicide Screen In ER Visit, 42% Of Older Adults Receive A Follow-Up Mental Health Evaluation
    Fewer older adults (age 60 and older), compared to younger adults (age 18 to 59), who screened positive for suicide risk during an emergency department visit received a follow-up mental health evaluation after they were discharged to home. About 42% of older adults who screened positive received a follow-up mental health evaluation, compared to 66% of younger adults. Fewer older adults than younger adults with current suicidal ideation or recent suicide attempt received referral resources, at only 34% of older adults compared to 60% of younger adults.
    These findings were reported in “Disparities in Treatment of Older Adults with Suicide Risk in the Emergency Department” by Sarah A. Arias, Ph.D.; Edwin D. Boudreaux, Ph.D.; Daniel L. Segal, Ph.D.; Ivan Miller, Ph.D.; Carlos A. Camargo Jr., M.D., DrPH; and Marian E. Betz, M.D., MPH. The researchers conducted a retrospective chart review at an emergency department that had implemented on-site universal screening for suicide risk. The chart review was a random sample of 800 visits from May 2014 through September 2016 for adults age 18 and older who screened positive for suicidal ideation during the past two weeks and/ or a suicide attempt within the past six months. Within the sample, 200 were for visits by older adults age 60 and older and 600 were for visits by younger adults age 18 to 59. Additional findings about the sample were as follows:
    • Older adults were less likely to make an emergency department for a psychiatric problem. About 53% of older adults and 70% of younger adults had a chief complaint involving psychiatric behavior/symptom.
    • Fewer older adults had complaint about self-harm behaviors. About 26% of older adults and 36% of younger adults had a chief complaint involving self-harm behavior.
    • More older adults had current suicidal ideation. About 93% of older adults and 79% of younger adults had documentation of current suicidal ideation.
    • Fewer older adults reported a current suicide attempt. About 17% of older adults and 23% of younger adults reported a suicide attempt in the past two weeks.
    • Overall older adults who screened positive for suicide risk were less likely to receive a mental health evaluation after emergency department discharge, and the rate of evaluations declined with age, from 48% among those in their 60s; 43% for those in their 70s; and 29% for those in their 80s.
      The researchers concluded that older adults at risk of suicide were not given the same access to care as younger adults. Significantly fewer older adults who were discharged home received a mental health evaluation or referrals.
      The full text of “Disparities in Treatment of Older Adults with Suicide Risk in the Emergency Department” was published July 28, 2017 in Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
  11. Please join us for an ICRC-S Webinar: Understanding the Relationship between Traumatic Brain Injury and Suicide Tuesday, June 19, 2018 3:00 – 4:00 PM Eastern Time
    • In this webinar, Lisa Brenner PhD, of the University of Colorado, Anschutz School of Medicine and Director of the Department of Veterans Affairs Rocky Mountain Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center, will discuss research on the relationship between traumatic brain injuries and suicide, how this association may influence patients’ suicidal ideation and suicide risk, and opportunities for early identification and treatment in health care settings of patients at high-risk for suicidal behavior due to a traumatic brain injury. During this presentation, Dr. Brenner will review epidemiological data on the prevalence of suicidal ideation and behavior among individuals – particularly veterans – with history of a traumatic brain injury, her current research on best practice interventions in primary care and community settings, and the opportunity for future research to avert suicidal thoughts and behaviors through enhanced care approaches. Participants will be able to ask questions of the presenter. To register: