Year: 2008 Source: Military Medicine, v.173, no.8, (August 2008), p.721-728 SIEC No: 20100666

This study explored correlates of the use of firearms in suicide. A national sample of psychiatric patients discharged from Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers was followed from time of discharge until December 1999. Patients who were male, Caucasian, & who had a diagnosis of substance abuse or posttraumatic stress disorder were significantly more likely to use a firearm than another method. Multivariable models indicated veterans living in states with lower rates of gun ownership, more restrictive gun laws, & higher social capital were less likely to use a firearm. Gun ownership rates, legislation, & levels of community cohesiveness are significantly associated with the likelihood of psychiatric patients using a gun for suicide. (47 refs.) JA