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MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 71(8): 306-312, 2022 Feb 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1707039


Suicide was among the 10 leading causes of death in the United States in 2020 among persons aged 10-64 years, and the second leading cause of death among children and adolescents aged 10-14 and adults aged 25-34 years (1). During 1999-2020, nearly 840,000 lives were lost to suicide in the United States. During that period, the overall suicide rate peaked in 2018 and declined in 2019 and 2020 (1). Despite the recent decline in the suicide rate, factors such as social isolation, economic decline, family stressors, new or worsening mental health symptoms, and disruptions to work and school associated with the COVID-19 pandemic have raised concerns about suicide risk in the United States. During 2020, a total of 12.2 million U.S. adults reported serious thoughts of suicide and 1.2 million attempted suicide (2). To understand how changes in suicide death rates might have varied among subpopulations, CDC analyzed counts and age-adjusted suicide rates during 2019 and 2020 by demographic characteristics, mechanism of injury, county urbanization level, and state. From 2019 to 2020, the suicide rate declined by 3% overall, including 8% among females and 2% among males. Significant declines occurred in seven states but remained stable in the other states and the District of Columbia. Despite two consecutive years of declines, the overall suicide rate remains 30% higher compared with that in 2000 (1). A comprehensive approach to suicide prevention that uses data driven decision-making and implements prevention strategies with the best available evidence, especially among disproportionately affected populations (3), is critical to realizing further declines in suicide and reaching the national goal of reducing the suicide rate by 20% by 2025 (4).

Suicide/statistics & numerical data , Suicide/trends , Adolescent , Adult , Age Distribution , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Child , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Population Surveillance , Sex Distribution , United States/epidemiology , Urbanization , Young Adult
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(24): 888-894, 2021 Jun 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1278793


Beginning in March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and response, which included physical distancing and stay-at-home orders, disrupted daily life in the United States. Compared with the rate in 2019, a 31% increase in the proportion of mental health-related emergency department (ED) visits occurred among adolescents aged 12-17 years in 2020 (1). In June 2020, 25% of surveyed adults aged 18-24 years reported experiencing suicidal ideation related to the pandemic in the past 30 days (2). More recent patterns of ED visits for suspected suicide attempts among these age groups are unclear. Using data from the National Syndromic Surveillance Program (NSSP),* CDC examined trends in ED visits for suspected suicide attempts† during January 1, 2019-May 15, 2021, among persons aged 12-25 years, by sex, and at three distinct phases of the COVID-19 pandemic. Compared with the corresponding period in 2019, persons aged 12-25 years made fewer ED visits for suspected suicide attempts during March 29-April 25, 2020. However, by early May 2020, ED visit counts for suspected suicide attempts began increasing among adolescents aged 12-17 years, especially among girls. During July 26-August 22, 2020, the mean weekly number of ED visits for suspected suicide attempts among girls aged 12-17 years was 26.2% higher than during the same period a year earlier; during February 21-March 20, 2021, mean weekly ED visit counts for suspected suicide attempts were 50.6% higher among girls aged 12-17 years compared with the same period in 2019. Suicide prevention measures focused on young persons call for a comprehensive approach, that is adapted during times of infrastructure disruption, involving multisectoral partnerships (e.g., public health, mental health, schools, and families) and implementation of evidence-based strategies (3) that address the range of factors influencing suicide risk.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Emergency Service, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Suicide, Attempted/statistics & numerical data , Adolescent , Adult , Child , Female , Humans , Male , United States/epidemiology , Young Adult
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 70(12): 442-448, 2021 03 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1151034


School closures affected more than 55 million students across the United States when implemented as a strategy to prevent the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 (1). Reopening schools requires balancing the risks for SARS-CoV-2 infection to students and staff members against the benefits of in-person learning (2). During December 3, 2020-January 31, 2021, CDC investigated SARS-CoV-2 transmission in 20 elementary schools (kindergarten through grade 6) that had reopened in Salt Lake County, Utah. The 7-day cumulative number of new COVID-19 cases in Salt Lake County during this time ranged from 290 to 670 cases per 100,000 persons.† Susceptible§ school contacts¶ (students and staff members exposed to SARS-CoV-2 in school) of 51 index patients** (40 students and 11 staff members) were offered SARS-CoV-2 reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing. Among 1,041 susceptible school contacts, 735 (70.6%) were tested, and five of 12 cases identified were classified as school-associated; the secondary attack rate among tested susceptible school contacts was 0.7%. Mask use among students was high (86%), and the median distance between students' seats in classrooms was 3 ft. Despite high community incidence and an inability to maintain ≥6 ft of distance between students at all times, SARS-CoV-2 transmission was low in these elementary schools. The results from this investigation add to the increasing evidence that in-person learning can be achieved with minimal SARS-CoV-2 transmission risk when multiple measures to prevent transmission are implemented (3,4).

COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Schools/statistics & numerical data , Adult , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , Child , Child, Preschool , Contact Tracing , Female , Humans , Male , Masks/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Physical Distancing , Schools/organization & administration , Utah/epidemiology