Michigan #SuicidePrevention Commission releases first summary on #suicide in the state
Editor’s note: This story discusses #suicide. If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, you can call the #NationalSuicidePreventionLifeline 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at 800-273-8255. If you feel like you need someone to talk to but do not feel like talking on the phone, try texting “Hello” to the Crisis Text Line at 741741, or visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org/talk-to-someone-now.
Someone dies by #suicide every six hours in Michigan.
Christine Moutier, a doctor with the AFSP, has said that there is never a single cause of #suicide at the individual level. There are always multiple risk factors, she said.
Recommendations for prevention
The commission has five priorities to prevent #suicide:
1. Minimize risk for suicidal behavior by promoting safe environments, resiliency and connectedness.
2. Increase and expand access to care to support those at risk.
3. Improve #suicideprevention training and education.
4. Implement best practices in #suicideprevention for health care systems.
5. Enhance #suicide specific data collection and systems.
Welcome to the “next chapter” of my life… being a voice and an advocate for #mentalhealthawarenessandsuicideprevention, especially pertaining to our younger generation of students and student-athletes.
Getting men to speak up and reach out for help and assistance is one of my passions. Us men need to not suffer in silence or drown our sorrows in alcohol, hang out at bars and strip joints, or get involved with drug use.
Having gone through a recent bout of #depression and #suicidalthoughts myself, I realize now, that I can make a huge difference in the lives of so many by sharing my story, and by sharing various resources I come across as I work in this space. #http://bit.ly/JamesMentalHealthArticle
Practically, these priorities can mean initiatives from limiting access to lethal means to creating a statewide #suicideprevention office.
Research shows when access to a highly lethal and leading #suicide method is reduced, the overall #suicide rate drops.
“Putting time, distance and other barriers between a person with thoughts of #suicide and the most lethal means can make the difference between life and death,” the report said.
The report includes recommendations for laypeople, educators, healthcare workers and state agencies for each priority.
For example, the recommendations for everyone to minimize suicidal behaviors include increasing community programming that promotes social connectedness, working with employers to include healthy living and #mentalhealth education and #suicideprevention programming in their training and promoting and distribute resources linkages where alcohol is sold.
The commission will develop an annual progress report on these recommendations going forward and will work on new and innovative recommendations in the future, the report said.
the Crisis Text Line at 741741, or visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org/talk-to-someone-now.
Someone dies by #suicide every six hours in Michigan.
The Michigan #SuicidePrevention Commission is working to change that.
The commission was formed in March 2020 and is charged with working with state departments, nonprofits and universities to research the causes and possible underlying factors of #suicide in Michigan. It released its first report with recommendations for reducing the #suicide rate on Monday.
“#Suicide is preventable, and Michigan’s current #suicide rates are unacceptable,” Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, stated in a news release this week. “However, through our plans and intentional actions, we can provide the help and resources necessary to save lives. Together, we can make Michigan a model state for #suicideprevention, and a place where everyone gets the help they need, when they need it.”
The commission gathered data for this report through surveys, virtual sessions with people across the state and by working with experts with the #AmericanFoundationforSuicidePrevention, the University of Michigan, Henry Ford Health System and John D. Dingell VA Medical Center.
The report acknowledges that #suicide is a complex issue with biological, psychological, social and cultural factors. Prevention is difficult because of #stigma, misconceptions about suicidal behavior and evolving risk factors, according to the commission.
Researchers are still looking into the impact of the #COVID-19 #pandemic on #behavioralhealth and #suicide.
In August 2020, the #CentersforDiseaseControlandPrevention released a report that examined national survey responses about American’s #mentalhealth from June 24-30, 2020.
It found that 11% of #adults over the age of 18 reported having seriously considered #suicide within the last 30 days. This is estimated to be twice as many as in 2018.
Demographics and causes in Michigan
Data gathered before the pandemic shows that suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in Michigan. Between 2009 and 2019, the rate of suicide among Michigan residents increased 28%. The average annual suicide rate has remained relatively flat for more than a decade but has been slowly on the rise since 2010, according to the report.
The commission found that, overall, working adults ages 30-59 have the highest suicide rates. Suicide attempts are more common among women than men, but men are more likely to die by suicide than women because they use more lethal means.
The white population has the highest suicide rates of all racial groups, according to the report. The suicide death rate for Black residents recently increased in 2018, driven primarily by an increase in the suicide rate for Black men from 9.4 people dying by suicide per 100,000 people to 16.2.
The commission found that while the number of suicides is greater in urban areas, suicide rates are generally higher in more rural areas. The northeastern part of the Lower Peninsula and eastern portion of the Upper Peninsula have the highest suicide rates in Michigan.
The highest number of suicides statewide are women ages 19-64 working in medical and healthcare related professions or as homemakers, according to the report.
Other high risk populations include active members of the military, children and teenagers, correction officers, people involved in criminal justice system, young adults (aged 18-25), first responders, homeless people, LGBTQ+ youth, grieving people, middle age men and veterans.
Causes for the increase in rates include access to means like guns or medicines, alcohol and drug use, chronic medical conditions and mental illness and the economic climate.