The Army released suicide data today for the month of August 2010. Among active-duty soldiers, there were 13 potential suicides: none have been confirmed as suicides, and all 13 remain under investigation. For July, the Army reported 12 potential suicides among active-duty soldiers. Since the release of that report, five have been confirmed as suicides, and seven remain under investigation.
During August, among reserve component soldiers who were not on active duty, there were 10 potential suicides. For July, among that same group, there were 16 total suicides. Of those, eight were confirmed as suicides and eight are pending determination of the manner of death.
“With the release of the Army Health Promotion, Risk Reduction and Suicide Prevention Report in July, the Army has transitioned suicide prevention efforts to the Health Promotion, Risk Reduction Council and Task Force. These two elements will help analyze, shape and implement the more than 240 additional changes to Army policy, procedure and processes recommended in the report,” said Col. Chris Philbrick, deputy director of the Army Health Promotion, Risk Reduction Council and Task Force.
“Our efforts continue to evolve as we learn more about the multiple factors contributing to suicides and high-risk behavior within our Army family. The end state remains the ability to provide our soldiers, civilians and families with the quality care and support they need and deserve,” Philbrick said.
Soldiers and families in need of crisis assistance can contact Military OneSource or the Defense Center of Excellence (DCoE) for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury Outreach Center. Trained consultants are available from both organizations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.
The Military OneSource toll-free number for those residing in the continental United States is 1-800-342-9647; their Web site address is http://www.militaryonesource.com. Overseas personnel should refer to the Military OneSource Web site for dialing instructions for their specific location.
The Army's comprehensive list of Suicide Prevention Program information is located at http://www.armyg1.army.mil/hr/suicide/default.asp.
Army leaders can access current health promotion guidance in newly revised Army Regulation 600-63 (Health Promotion) at: http://www.army.mil/usapa/epubs/pdf/r600_63.pdf and Army Pamphlet 600-24 (Health Promotion, Risk Reduction and Suicide Prevention) at http://www.army.mil/usapa/epubs/pdf/p600_24.pdf.
Suicide prevention training resources for Army families can be accessed at http://www.armyg1.army.mil/hr/suicide/training_sub.asp?sub_cat=20 (requires Army Knowledge Online access to download materials).
The DCoE Outreach Center can be contacted at 1-866-966-1020, via electronic mail at Resources@DCoEOutreach.org and at www.dcoe.health.mil.
Information about the Army’s Comprehensive Soldier Fitness Program is located at http://www.army.mil/csf.
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention: http://www.afsp.org.
Suicide Prevention Resource Council: http://www.sprc.org/index.asp.