Suicide Rate Up 1.4 Percent – Still Tenth Leading Cause of Death in U.S.

The CDC released its mortality report including the most recent data related to suicide in the U.S. for the year 2018. According to the new data, suicide remains the tenth leading cause of death, and the rate of suicide in 2018 increased by 1.4 percent. In 2017, the last year the CDC released mortality data, there were 47,173 suicide deaths; in 2018 there were 48,344: an increase of 1,171 additional deaths.

According to leading suicide prevention organizations, the three key steps we can take to lower the suicide rate:

  • People must be able to access affordable, comprehensive health care, including mental health care that specifically addresses suicide prevention. (In the vast majority of cases, research shows that 90 percent of the time when someone dies by suicide, they have a diagnosable mental health condition at the time of their death.)
  • Training for primary care physicians and all clinicians must be offered in how to better screen for mental health and suicide risk; and how to detect risk and provide lifesaving treatment.
  • We need to improve our understanding about help seeking and how to have caring, informed conversations about mental health.

To read the full CDC report, click here.