New study finds US veteran suicides higher in West, rural areas
Sept. 25, 2017
Military veterans are nearly twice as likely to commit suicide in the rural areas of the Western U.S., according to data released by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
One of the main factors contributing to this issue may be access to healthcare, according to Phoenix VA Hospital Director Rima Nelson. Healthcare facilities are much more spread out in the West, leaving veterans with fewer options. Studies have also found that the suicide rate for veterans who receive treatment from the VA have a much lower suicide rate.
“It’s very important that we reach out to as many of our veterans as we can,” said Nelson. “We know we cannot do that alone. We really need the help of our community partners.”
If you are a veteran, family member or friend of a veteran who is at risk, don’t hesitate to call the Veteran Crisis Hotline 800-273-8255, or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.