Year: 2012 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior.(2011).41(3):287-296. SIEC No: 20120138

Oregon Violent Death Reporting System data were linked with Veterans Affairs (VA) administrative data to identify and describe veterans who completed suicide in Oregon from 2000 to 2005 (n = 968), and to describe their VA health care utilization in the year prior to death. Twenty-two percent had received health care in the VA system. Of these, 57% did not have mental health diagnoses and 58% had not seen mental health professionals. A larger proportion of those who accessed care were VA-enrolled and received service-connected disability benefits. Fifty-five veterans were hospitalized during the year prior to death. Of these, 33% completed suicide within 30 days of a hospitalization. Further development of suicide prevention strategies for veterans in the community, including general medical treatment settings, is indicated.