Look Out for Your Mate: Vets have Higher Mortality Rate

According to a new study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, veterinarians have a higher proportionate mortality ratio than the general population. Male veterinarians were 2.1 times and female veterinarians 3.5 times as likely as the general US population to die by suicide. [Source: CAHFS Weekly Update, January 3, 2019]

Unfortunately, things are looking bleak in general: during 2000-2016, the suicide rate among the U.S. working age population (persons aged 16-64 years) increased 34 percent, from 12.9 per 100,000 civilians to 17.3. This data was reported in the MMWR. The same study mentions that male suicide rate was highest in Construction and Extraction at 53.2 per 100,000 people, whereas the group with the highest female suicide rate was Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media with a rate of 15.6.

CDC recommends a comprehensive approach to prevent suicides: enhancing social connectedness, expanding access to relevant resources, strengthening state or local economic supports, implementing practices that encourage help-seeking and decrease stigma, providing referrals to mental health services and reducing access to lethal means among persons at risk. Personally, we can all become informed, be there to listen, and take these things seriously.