Study: Higher Poverty Tied to Increased Youth Suicide Risk

February 14, 2020

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News

U.S. News & World Report

New findings suggest there may be a link between poverty and youth suicide. Researchers analyzed national data on nearly 21,000 suicide deaths among people ages 5 to 19 between 2007 and 2016. They found that counties with higher poverty rates had higher rates of youth suicide, especially firearm suicide. “We found that children are nearly twice as likely to die by firearm suicide in counties with high poverty concentration,” said lead author Jennifer Hoffmann, a pediatric emergency physician at the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. However, further investigation is needed to determine whether there are differences in access to guns or safe storage practices that may account for higher youth suicide rates in poor areas.

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