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Suicide is a significant global public health problem. Formed in November 2019, the Suicide Research Team leads NIMH’s suicide research activities and coordinates outreach initiatives that engage key agencies and stakeholders supporting research and other efforts to help prevent suicide.
The team’s work focuses on areas that align with the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and significantly impact the Institute’s commitment to reducing the suicide rate by 20% by 2025. This includes activities like advancing suicide prevention research in health care settings. The team also focuses on potential increases in suicide-associated risks due to the COVID-19 pandemic (for example, distress associated with unemployment) and increases in suicide risk for underserved populations. The team’s initiatives are continually evolving to meet newer and emerging priorities, such as concerning trends in youth suicide, especially among Black youth.
The Suicide Research Team helps develop suicide-related workshops and funding opportunities to address suicide prevention research gaps. Topics range from suicide etiology (for example, social isolation; sleep problems) and risk identification (for example, risk algorithms from electronic medical records) to implementing practical and scalable interventions in a variety of settings, including health care, education, and criminal justice systems that serve at-risk populations.