NW PA Counties graphicThe Northwest Pennsylvania (NW PA) Veteran Suicide Prevention Program operates on a three-pronged approach involving healthcare providers, community organizations, and Veterans and their families in the 15 counties of NW PA. Because of this focus, we want to further the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs distribution of data about 2021 state-level suicide rates. We encourage everyone to review this information, share it within personal and professional networks, and get involved in stigma-reduction and suicide prevention efforts in their communities.

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State-Level Veteran Suicide Data: 2021 Update

As part of the 2023 National Veteran Suicide Prevention Annual Report release, 2021 state-level suicide findings are now available. The state data sheets are a critical tool to help VA and state-level partners design and execute the most effective suicide prevention strategies. Visit the Veteran Suicide Data and Reporting website to access additional reports and resources.

Pennsylvania Veteran Suicide Data Sheet, 2021

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is leading efforts to understand suicide risk factors, develop evidence-based prevention programs, and prevent Veteran suicide through a public health approach. As part of its work, VA analyzes data at the national and state levels to guide the design and execution of the most effective strategies to prevent Veteran suicide.

The 2021 state data sheets present the latest findings from VA’s ongoing analysis of suicide rates and include the most up-to-date state-level suicide information for the United States. The Pennsylvania data sheet includes information about Pennsylvania Veteran suicides by age, sex, and suicide method and compares this with regional and national data.

After accounting for age differences, the Veteran suicide rate in Pennsylvania:

• Was not significantly different from the national Veteran suicide rate
• Was significantly higher than the national general population suicide rate

2021 suicide deaths by age group

Pennsylvania is considered part of the Northeastern Region and regional data is included in the data sheet. The following states are part of the region:

• Connecticut
• Maine
• Massachusetts
• New Hampshire
• New Jersey
• New York
• Pennsylvania
• Rhode Island
• Vermont

Additionally, the report includes Pennsylvania Veteran and Total Pennsylvania, Northeastern Region, and National Suicide Deaths by Method for 2021. For Pennsylvania Veterans, 66.3% of suicide death were attributed to firearms, 19.5% to suffocation, and 14.2% to low-count methods that are not detailed to protect the individual’s anonymity.

PA 2021 suicide methods

Ready to become part of the solution and learn how to talk about suicide and mental health? Register now for our upcoming QPR Gatekeeper and CALM training sessions.

Looking to Get Involved?

friends standing togetherWhether you identify as a healthcare provider, community organization, or Veteran, there are several opportunities through the NW PA Veteran Suicide Prevention Program and PERU to connect to resources, participate in educational training, and promote harm reduction strategies. We are actively recruiting healthcare and community partners to work with us in meeting our goals and objectives. To learn more, visit the program website at theresilientveteran.org.

Need Help? Know Someone Who Does? Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 or use the online Lifeline Crisis Chat. Both are free and confidential. You’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor in your area.

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