Researchers to seek out explanations for higher suicide rate in military | SkyHiNews.com

Researchers to seek out explanations for higher suicide rate in military

Colleen O'Connor
The Denver Post

The U.S. Army will spend $17 million over the next three years trying to figure out why the rate of suicide in the military has outpaced the rate among civilians in the past five years.

The Military Suicide Research Consortium, a project announced Wednesday, will conduct cutting-edge explorations into suicide in the military that can have applications in the civilian population, including Colorado – where the 2009 suicide rate was 18.4 per 100,000, a 20-year high and significantly higher than the military rate.

But the consortium’s immediate concern is the suicide rate in the military, which has surpassed that of the general U.S. population.

“Historically, being in the military was a protection against suicide,” said Peter Gutierrez, a national expert on suicide research who works at the Mental Illness Research, Educational and Clinical Center at the Denver Veterans Affairs Medical Center. “The rates were significantly lower than in the general population. That’s no longer true, and it’s very perplexing to us.”

Read more: Researchers to seek out explanations for higher suicide rate in military – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_16453182#ixzz13fcSXEc0

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