Study pinpoints risk factors for suicide among veterans

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EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — New research pinpoints risk factors for suicide among military veterans.

The study looked at nearly 2 million people who served on active duty but had transitioned to civilian life.

It showed suicide rates after leaving the military peaked at six to 12 months after separation.

Males and younger veterans were the most likely to take their own lives according to the study, and suicides were higher among members of the Marine Corps and Army.

“What I would like to share with our Veterans, staff and community partners is that we are here – 24/7/365 – we will always be here for our Veterans and those who support our Veterans,” said Jason Cave, Director West Texas VA Health Care System.

Simple actions that can help make a difference for a Veteran include:

  • Learning about the warning signs of suicide, found on the Veterans Crisis Line website.
  • Watching the free S.A.V.E. training video to learn how to respond with care and compassion if someone indicates they are having thoughts of suicide.
  • Contacting VA’s Coaching Into Care program where a licensed psychologist or social worker will provide loved ones with guidance for motivating Veterans to seek support.
  • Sharing stories of hope and recovery from VA’s Make the Connection.
  • Reaching out to the Veterans in your life to show them you care by sending a check-in text, cook them dinner, or simply asking, “How are you?”
  • In addition to the walk-in care, WTVAHCS offers the Primary Care Mental Health Integration (PCMHI) team as part of every Patient Aligned Care Team.

If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, contact the Veterans Crisis Line to receive free, confidential support and crisis intervention available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, text to 838255, or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.  

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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