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Provisional Number of Suicides Down 3 Percent in 2020

Largest percentage difference between monthly numbers for 2019 and 2020 seen in April, which was 14 percent lower in 2020

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) — In 2020, the provisional number of suicides was 3 percent lower than in 2019, according to a November Vital Statistics Rapid Release report, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Sally C. Curtin, from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues present provisional numbers of deaths due to suicide by demographic characteristics and by month for 2020 compared with 2019. Data were based on 99 percent of all 2020 death records received by the National Center for Health Statistics as of May 19, 2021.

The researchers found that in 2020, the provisional number of suicides was 45,855, which was 3 percent lower than in 2019. The provisional age-adjusted suicide rate was also 3 percent lower in 2020 versus 2019 (13.5 versus 13.9 per 100,000). In March through October and December, the monthly number of suicides was lower in 2020 than in 2019. The largest percentage difference between monthly numbers for 2019 and 2020 was in April, where the provisional number was 14 percent lower (3,468 versus 4,029 suicides). For males and females, the age-adjusted suicide rate was 2 and 8 percent lower, respectively, in 2020 versus 2019 (21.9 versus 22.4 and 5.5 versus 6.0, respectively).

In all race and Hispanic-origin groups, females experienced declines in suicide rates between 2019 and 2020; only the 10 percent decline in non-Hispanic White females was significant. For non-Hispanic White and non-Hispanic Asian males, rates declined, but they increased for non-Hispanic Black, non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native, and Hispanic males.

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