Late Breaking News

Military Suicides Decrease for Active Duty, Rise in Reserve Forces

By Sandra Basu

WASHINGTON—While the rate of suicides among active duty troops decreased from 2012 to 2013, suicides appeared to increase among reserve forces, according to recent data.

New data released by DoD reports that in 2012 there were 319 suicides among active component servicemembers and 203 suicides among reserve component troops (130 in the National Guard and 73 in the reserve.) In comparison, preliminary suicide data for 2013 indicates that there were 261 suicides among active duty troops and 213 deaths in the reserve and National Guard component, according to DoD.

The 2012 suicide data was released in DoD’s annual DoD Suicide Event Report (DoDSER).

“The department takes suicide prevention very seriously and considers any measure that saves a life as one worth taking,” Lt. Gen. Michael S. Linnington, military deputy to the acting undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, said in a written statement. “The 2012 DoDSER gives us comprehensive information of suicide events and a greater understanding of the range of conditions associated with this very serious problem for the department.”

Among other findings of the report was that  the use of a firearm was the primary method for suicides (65.1%) and the majority of firearms used were non-military issued firearms (75.8%). For suicide attempts, the use of drugs was the most frequently reported method (54.8%).

The agency reported that it has standardized practices and processes across the services and the department “to provide consistent and comparable information that helps inform suicide prevention efforts.”

 “Suicide death rate will now be calculated for each component consistent with the methodology used to report the incidence of death in the U.S. by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” the agency explained in a statement.

“Previously, each service branch calculated a suicide rate for their service members using different reporting intervals and statistical methodologies. Additionally, service component, rather than duty status, will be used to count suicide number for the total force (active, guard and reserve components).” the statement further explained.

 


Related Articles

White House Physician Nominated as VA Secretary After Shulkin Ouster

The nominee for new VA secretary has served as the White House physician for the last three presidential administrations.

VA Study Addresses Concerns About Anti-Epileptic Drugs, Suicidal Behavior Link

In 2008, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an alert about increased risk for suicidal ideation and behavior for patients taking anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs).


U.S. Medicine Recommends


More From late breaking news

Late Breaking News

White House Physician Nominated as VA Secretary After Shulkin Ouster

The nominee for new VA secretary has served as the White House physician for the last three presidential administrations.

Late Breaking News

VA Study Addresses Concerns About Anti-Epileptic Drugs, Suicidal Behavior Link

In 2008, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an alert about increased risk for suicidal ideation and behavior for patients taking anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs).

Late Breaking News

VHA Data Helps Validate Tool for Hypoglycemia Risk ID

BRONX, NY — For patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), living more than 30 miles from their nephrologist is associated with many unfavorable outcomes. They have lower rates of clinic visit adherence, more limited access... View Article

Late Breaking News

VA Reduces Email Burden for Clinicians to Allow More Time, Focus on Patients

BRONX, NY — For patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), living more than 30 miles from their nephrologist is associated with many unfavorable outcomes. They have lower rates of clinic visit adherence, more limited access... View Article

Late Breaking News

VA, DoD Slash Time for Disabled Servicemembers to Get Through Evaluation Process

The time for injured and ill servicemembers to get through the Integrated Disability Evaluation System process from their date of referral to their notification of benefits has been slashed more than half in the last decade.

Facebook Comment

Subscribe to U.S. Medicine Print Magazine

U.S. Medicine is mailed free each month to physicians, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and administrators working for Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service.

Subscribe Now

Receive Our Email Newsletter

Stay informed about federal medical news, clinical updates and reports on government topics for the federal healthcare professional.

Sign Up