Despite Prevention Efforts Suicide Rate on the Rise in South Dakota

A legislative committee looking at mental health access issues held a long discussion about the incidence of suicide in the state.

The CDC reports that suicide deaths increased by forty four percent between 1999 and 2016. One hundred ninety-two deaths by suicide were reported last year.

Health Department Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon says they have prevention programs in place.

Malsam-Rysdon says they believe those program are helping.

Social Services Deputy Secretary Amy Iverson-Pollreisz says South Dakota is not alone in the problem.

Legislators had many more questions, but Committee Chair, Senator Deb Soholt said they would come back to the issue at a future meeting.