In attempt to answer the question: " Have US suicides increased in March/April 2020 compared to 2019 ?". I've been unable to find any published US data for either 2019 or 2020.

Does anyone know of any published data?

Update: Resources already checked: United Health Foundation CDC Suicide Facts & Figures American Soc for Suicide Prevention World Population Review-US NVDRS (cdc) and of course, Wikipedia Common to all of these is that the most recent data is 2018

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    $\begingroup$ NVSS probably has these, but that data is delayed by weeks. A quick search finds such stats using NVSS, but from 2005 books.google.com/books?id=HGQ-L3W_OFIC&pg=PA379 You have to look into NVDRS though for additional details cdc.gov/violenceprevention/datasources/nvdrs/index.html $\endgroup$ May 20, 2020 at 11:49
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    $\begingroup$ ... and that DB is lagged by years (last summary data is for 2015) cdc.gov/violenceprevention/datasources/nvdrs/… Or maybe Trump cut funding for it altogether. Even from NVSS, the last summary is for 2018 cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db362-h.pdf (published April 2020) $\endgroup$ May 20, 2020 at 11:55
  • $\begingroup$ @Fizz, ah yes, but I'm also wondering if there isn't a suppression of the data motivated by a desire to prevent copycat suicide attempts. Regardless, if the data is supressed it makes it impossible to validate a claim that suicides are increasing dramatically due to coronavirus mitigation's impact on the economy. $\endgroup$
    – BobE
    May 20, 2020 at 12:49
  • $\begingroup$ @BobE - If you are going to get copycat suicides, you are going to get them whether recent data is suppressed or not. I agree though that without access to the data, corroborated evidence of lowering or rising suicide rates would be impossible. $\endgroup$ May 25, 2020 at 8:47

1 Answer 1


At the time of writing this answer, suicide data is not publically available post 2018.

CDC’s WISQARS™ (Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System) is an interactive, publically accessible, online database that provides fatal and nonfatal injury, violent death, and cost of injury data from a variety of trusted sources.

The CDC states:

Mortality data come from the National Center for Heath Statistics (NCHS), CDC annual mortality data files. NCHS mortality data are derived from the Multiple Cause of Death data. For more information, contact NCHS at (301)436-8500 or [email protected] — or visit the NCHS website.

The National Death Index (NDI) service has death records added annually, approximately 10-12 months after the end of a particular calendar year. This information is available to investigators solely for statistical purposes in medical and health research. The service is not accessible to organizations or the general public for legal, administrative, or genealogy purposes. To access the NDI service, you need to complete an NCHS application form.

The final 2018 NDI file is available for both NDI Routine searches and NDI Plus searches.

The Early Release File for 2019 is now available for searching. See completion percentages by state

The Early Release File is now updated quarterly. The current searchable version will always be the most recent version.

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) in an agreement with the National Association of Public Health Statistics and Information Systems (NAPHSIS) implemented a restrictive rule for publically reporting National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) state- and county-level death data for years 2008 and later, in order to avoid inadvertent disclosure of cases.

  • $\begingroup$ Unfortunately, the data to compare suicide rates during the COVID-19 crisis is not available. So your answer, while informative, does not help to answer the title question. BTW, thanks $\endgroup$
    – BobE
    May 25, 2020 at 11:55
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    $\begingroup$ @BobE. It will be useful in a year, no? $\endgroup$
    – Steven Jeuris
    May 25, 2020 at 12:38
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    $\begingroup$ @BobE - The point is that the data is not available publically at this point in time. $\endgroup$ May 25, 2020 at 12:40
  • $\begingroup$ @StevenJeuris, actually the data will not be useful in a year. What I am trying to validate is the claim that the current economic contraction (due to COVID-19) has resulted in a significant increase in suicides, thereby justifying the rapid "opening" of business activities despite regional increases in COVID-19 deaths. If the number of suicides occurring in the past two months is not data that available to the public, it is impossible to validate or verify the claim. $\endgroup$
    – BobE
    May 25, 2020 at 14:52
  • $\begingroup$ @ChrisRogers BTW, does the rationale " avoid inadvertent disclosure of cases" make any sense to you? I would expect that data being reported to NCHS and NAPHSIS has been anonymized for statistical purposes well before arrival at the statistics unit $\endgroup$
    – BobE
    May 25, 2020 at 15:18

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