High kid suicide rates linked to mental health worker shortages, study says

PIXNIO

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – A new study finds kids are more likely to kill themselves when they live in places with a shortage of mental health professionals.

Researchers looked at more than five thousand suicides that took place from 2015 to 2016 among kids 5 to 19 years old.

Counties with a shortage of mental healthcare workers saw on average five suicides per 100-thousand young people.

Counties without such a shortage saw 3.6 such deaths per 100-thousand.

The Federal Government has guidelines for determining health professional shortage areas.

More than two-thirds of the counties across the U.S. don’t have enough mental health workers.

These areas also show higher rates of poverty and lower rates of health insurance among residents.

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