VA San Diego Healthcare System
Help VASDHS Prevent Veteran Suicide
September is Suicide Prevention Month, and the VA San Diego Healthcare System (VASDHS) is committed to the cause in the workforce, resources, and community outreach.
This month, VASDHS is participating in the following initiatives to provide information and resources to our community partners and the public:
- 9/18, Community Counseling Center on base at MCAS Miramar
- 9/24, Mission Valley resource table, Lobby
- 9/25, Free screening of the Ripple Effect, Escondido
- 9/26, La Jolla VAMC resource table, SCI Atrium
- Potted yellow flowers to clinics
- yellow ribbons distributed to staff
- gunlocks to several community partners
Suicide is a complex national public health issue that affects communities nationwide, with more than 45,000 Americans, including more than 6,000 Veterans, dying by suicide every year. But death is preventable. VA is using a community-driven approach to prevent suicide. VA is also finding innovative ways to provide support and care to all 20 million U.S. Veterans, whenever they need it.
“VASDHS is working hard to end Veteran suicide. We know that only about a third of Veterans come to VA for health care,” said Dr. Robert Smith, VASDHS director. “That’s why we need everyone in the community to get involved. This September, and all year, I encourage everyone to take a moment to be there for Veterans in need. One act of thoughtfulness can make a big difference and may even save a life.”
You don’t need specialized training to prevent suicide. Everyone can play a role by learning to recognize warning signs, showing compassion and care to Veterans in need, and offering your support. Here are some actions anyone can take to Be There:
Are you a Veteran in crisis or having thoughts of suicide? Know a Veteran in crisis? If so, please call the Veterans Crisis Line for confidential support, available 24-hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, text to 838255 or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.