DOH: Volusia’s Suicide Rate Falling, But Still Higher Than Florida’s Rate

By on October 19, 2017 in WNDB News

 

Volusia County, FL – The suicide rate in Volusia County is declining, but the rate is still consistently higher than Florida’s suicide rate, according to a report from the Volusia County Department of Health (DOH).

During 2016, Volusia County’s suicide rate was at 18.3 per 100,000 population. That rate is down from 22.6 in 2015, but it is still higher than the Florida rate of 14.2.

(Chart courtesy Volusia DOH)

The DOH report examines suicide rates and youth mental health in Volusia County from 2012 through 2016. It was compiled using data from the Florida Department of Health Vital Statistics death files and the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration hospitalization file.

The report revealed stark differences in suicide rates among the races. Rates were lowest among black Volusia County residents, and white residents consistently had suicide rates two to three times higher than rates for blacks and Hispanics.

(Chart courtesy Volusia DOH)

There were also geographical differences in suicide rates. The highest was in the southeast quadrant of Volusia County (23.7 per 100,000 population). The lowest were in northwest Volusia (14.5) and southwest Volusia (14.6). Volusia men also had higher suicide rates than women each year from 2012 to 2016.

The study also examined mental health and well-being of Volusia’s middle and high school students, partially assessed on the Florida Youth Tobacco Survey. It discovered that middle school students had similar response to high school students when it came to feelings of hopelessness and self-harm.

The DOH study hopes to raise awareness of suicide and mental health issues, according to department officials, but it does not examine cause and effect relationships. You can find the complete study here.

Photo courtesy Bennian and Shutterstock.com

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.

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