Trust Magazine

Suicide Is an Urgent Public Health Problem in America

End note

In this Issue:

  • Spring 2022
  • A New Collaboration for Vast and Lasting Conservation
  • Big Ideas, Big Results
  • Courts Shifted Online During the Pandemic
  • Garibaldi Glacier
  • Global Public Opinion in an Era of Democratic Anxiety
  • Noteworthy
  • Return on Investment
  • Small Cities Worry Cybersecurity Money Won’t Reach Them
  • Suicide Is an Urgent Public Health Problem in America
  • The Theranos Problem Congress Must Still Solve
  • Where Rivers Meet the Sea
  • Why Veterans With GI Bill Benefits Still Take Out Student Loans
  • View All Other Issues
Suicide Is an Urgent Public Health Problem in America

The Pew Charitable Trusts has launched a suicide risk reduction project and reports that suicide screening can connect people to treatment and save lives. The Centers for disease Control and Prevention says that more than 47,500 people died by suicide in 2019–which translates to one death every 11 minutes–and more than 12 million adults had thoughts of suicide.

More than 47,000 people die by suicide each year.
Suicide was the 12th-leading cause of death in the country in 2020.
Rate increase among females: 139% American Indian & Alaska Native, 68% White, 65% Black, 37% Hispanic, and 15% Asian & Pacific Islander
Rate increase among males: 71% American Indian & Alaska Native, 40% White, 9 % Black, 9% Hispanic, and 10% Asian & Pacific Islander
About half of all people who die by suicide interact with the health care system within a month of their death, giving health care providers a critical opportunity to screen for suicide.
Eight hospital emergency departments found 30% fewer suicide attempts among patients who were screened for suicide risk and received evidence-based care, such as additional screening and follow-up phone calls, compared with patients who were not screened.

If you or someone you know needs help, please call or text the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or visit and click on the chat button.

Global Public Opinion in an Era of Democratic Anxiety Return on Investment

Spotlight on Mental Health

Trust Magazine

New Reforms for Over-the-Counter Drugs

Quick View
Trust Magazine

In a move designed to streamline regulation of overthe- counter drugs, Congress passed—and President Donald Trump signed—legislation in March that will allow the Food and Drug Administration to move more quickly to address safety concerns and permit manufacturers to more easily market new products.

A patient in profile at a methadone clinic with a cup to their mouth in front of an office desk.
A patient in profile at a methadone clinic with a cup to their mouth in front of an office desk.

Addiction Treatment is Out of Reach for Many Americans

Quick View

Drug overdose deaths skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic: Provisional data covering a 12-month period shows that overdose deaths reached the record-setting number of more than 99,000 fatalities as of March 2021. Opioid treatment programs (OTPs)—the only health care facilities that can offer patients all three forms of medication for opioid use disorder (OUD): methadone, buprenorphine, and injectable extended-release naltrexone—are critical to reducing overdose deaths and providing life-saving addiction treatment. But they do so only if patients are able to access services.

911 dispatchers
911 dispatchers

Improving Emergency Responses to Behavioral Health Crises

Quick View

While much of the health care sector has increased its use of data to inform patient care and institutional decisions, many 911 call centers—which are a gateway to receiving emergency care—are lagging, leaving communities without the information needed to improve responses, including for those experiencing a behavioral health crisis.

Composite image of modern city network communication concept

Learn the Basics of Broadband from Our Limited Series

Sign up for our four-week email course on Broadband Basics

Quick View

How does broadband internet reach our homes, phones, and tablets? What kind of infrastructure connects us all together? What are the major barriers to broadband access for American communities?

What Is Antibiotic Resistance—and How Can We Fight It?

Sign up for our four-week email series The Race Against Resistance.

Quick View

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, also known as “superbugs,” are a major threat to modern medicine. But how does resistance work, and what can we do to slow the spread? Read personal stories, expert accounts, and more for the answers to those questions in our four-week email series: Slowing Superbugs.

Explore Pew’s new and improved
Fiscal 50 interactive

Your state's stats are more accessible than ever with our new and improved Fiscal 50 interactive:

  • Maps, trends, and customizable charts
  • 50-state rankings
  • Analysis of what it all means
  • Shareable graphics and downloadable data
  • Proven fiscal policy strategies


Welcome to the new Fiscal 50

Key changes include:

  • State pages that help you keep track of trends in your home state and provide national and regional context.
  • Interactive indicator pages with highly customizable and shareable data visualizations.
  • A Budget Threads feature that offers Pew’s read on the latest state fiscal news.

Learn more about the new and improved Fiscal 50.