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Health Indicator Report of Suicide

From 2015 to 2017, Utah's age-adjusted suicide rate was 22.0 per 100,000 persons, with an average of 628 suicides per year. Utah had the fifth highest age-adjusted suicide rates in the U.S. during this time period. In 2017, suicide was the leading cause of death for Utahns ages 10 to 17 and ages 18 to 24. It is the second leading cause of death for ages 25 to 44 and the fourth-leading cause of death for ages 45-64. Overall, suicide is the eighth-leading cause of death for Utahns (age-adjusted rate). Completed suicides are only part of the problem. More people are hospitalized or treated in an emergency room for suicide attempts than are fatally injured. In 2014, the most recent data year available, 13 Utahns were treated for self-inflicted injuries every day (3,280 treat-and-release emergency department visits plus 1,294 total hospitalizations). According to the 2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, during the past 12 months before the survey Utah high school students reported the following: 33.0% felt sad or hopeless, 21.6% seriously considered attempting suicide, 17.1% made a suicide plan, 9.6% attempted suicide one or more times and 4.0% of these students suffered an injury, poisoning, or an overdose that had to be treated by a doctor or nurse. 2017 Prevention Needs Assessment data indicate that Salt Lake County had significantly higher rates of students reporting feeling sad or hopeless, TriCounty Health District students had significantly higher rates of seriously considering suicide, Salt Lake County had a significantly higher rates of students reporting making a suicide plan and of attempting suicide compared to the state. All suicide attempts should be taken seriously. Those who survive suicide attempts are often seriously injured and many have depression and other mental health problems. Suicide is a complex public health issue where victims may be blamed and family members stigmatized. Consequently, suicide is not openly discussed making it difficult to collect meaningful data that is vital to suicide prevention efforts.

Suicide by Local Health District, Utah and U.S., 2015-2017 and U.S. 2014-2016


*Use caution in interpreting, the estimate has a relative standard error greater than 30% and does not meet UDOH standards for reliability. Prior to 2015 San Juan County was part of the Southeast Local Health District. In 2015 the San Juan County Local Health District was formed. Data reported are for all years using the current boundaries. Suicides are determined using ICD-10 codes X60-X84, Y87.0, *U03.

Data Sources

  • Utah Death Certificate Database, Office of Vital Records and Statistics, Utah Department of Health
  • Population Estimates: National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) through a collaborative agreement with the U.S. Census Bureau, IBIS Version 2017
  • National Center for Injury Prevention and Control's Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS)

Data Interpretation Issues

ICD stands for the International Classification of Diseases. It is a coding system maintained by the World Health Organization and the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics used to classify causes of death, such as suicide, on death certificates. These codes are updated every decade or so to account for advances in medical technology. The U.S. is currently using the 10th revision (ICD-10) to code causes of death. The 9th revision (ICD-9) is still used for hospital and emergency department visits. The Youth Risk Behavior Survey includes surveys of representative samples of 9th through 12th grade students in public schools. The survey is conducted in odd years. Data are self-reported and subject to recall bias. Data are from a sample survey and subject to selection bias. Comparisons of annual rates must be interpreted cautiously as methods used to collect data my vary from year to year. With the introductions of active parental consent for Utah school surveys between 1997 and 1999, the student response rate for the survey decreased significantly. Participation in the 2015 was too low to meet the reporting threshold as defined by CDC, so results for that year are not available.


Suicide Death Rate: Number of resident deaths resulting from the intentional use of force against oneself per 100,000 population (ICD-10 codes X60-X84, Y87.0, *U03). Suicide Risk Among Students: Percentage of students who reported a suicide risk factor (felt sad or hopeless, seriously considered attempting suicide, made a suicide plan, or attempted suicide) during the past 12 months.


Suicide Death Rate: Number of deaths resulting from the intentional use of force against oneself. Suicide Risk Among Students: Number of students who reported a suicide risk factor (felt sad or hopeless, seriously considered attempting suicide, made a suicide plan, or attempted suicide) during the past 12 months.


Suicide Death Rate: Total number of persons in the population of Utah. Suicide Risk Among Students: Number of surveyed Utah high school students.

Healthy People Objective MHMD-1:

Reduce the suicide rate
U.S. Target: 10.2 suicides per 100,000 population
State Target: 13.3 suicides per 100,000 population

Other Objectives

{{style color:#003366 Healthy People 2020 Objective IVP-41:}}[[br]] Reduce nonfatal intentional self-harm injuries[[br]] '''U.S. Target:''' 112.4 emergency department visits per 100,000 population[[br]] '''State Target:''' 91.7 emergency department visits per 100,000 population[[br]] [[br]] {{style color:#003366 Healthy People 2020 Objective MHMD-2:}}[[br]] Reduce suicide attempts by adolescents[[br]] '''U.S. Target:''' 1.7 suicide attempts per 100 population[[br]] '''State Target:''' 1.9 suicide attempts per 100 population

How Are We Doing?

The 2017 Utah age-adjusted suicide rate was 22.7 per 100,000 population. Males (34.2 per 100,000 population) had a significantly higher age-adjusted suicide rate compared to females (11.5 per 100,000 population). In Utah from 2015 to 2017, males had significantly higher suicide rates than females in every age group. Males ages 45-54 and 75 and older had the highest suicide rates among males (47.7 per 100,000 population). Females 45-54 years of age had the highest suicide rates among female age groups (22.1 per 100,000 population). From 2015 to 2017, TriCounty LHD, Central Utah LHD, Southeast LHD, and Weber-Morgan LHD had significantly higher age-adjusted suicide rates compared to the state rate. Among Utah Small Areas, SLC (Downtown) V2, Duchesne County, Ogden (Downtown), Kearns V2, Washington City, Southwest LHD (Other), Sandy (West), Daggett and Uintah County, and St. George had significantly higher age-adjusted suicide rates compared to the state rate during 2015-2017.

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

Utah's suicide rate has been consistently higher than the national rate. In 2016 (the most recent national-level data year available), according to the National Center for Health Statistics, the age-adjusted suicide rate for the U.S. was 13.4 per 100,000 population, while Utah's suicide rate was 21.6 per 100,000 population during the same year.

What Is Being Done?

The UDOH Violence and Injury Prevention Program (VIPP) is funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to implement the Utah Violent Death Reporting System (UTVDRS). UTVDRS is a data collection and monitoring system that will help Utahns better understand the public health problem of violence by informing decision makers about the magnitude, trends, and characteristics of violent deaths such as suicide, and to evaluate and continue to improve state-based violence prevention policies and programs. Data are collected from the Office of the Medical Examiner, Vital Records, and law enforcement agencies and are linked together to help identify risk factors, understand circumstances, and better characterize perpetrators of violent deaths. The Violence and Injury Prevention Program (VIPP) has partnered with the Division of Substance and Mental Health (DSAMH) to facilitate the Suicide Prevention Coalition.

Available Services

All Counties, 24 Hours: [[br]] National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800) 273-TALK (8255) Mobile Crisis Outreach Team - Salt Lake County[[br]] 801-587-3000 Man Therapy: [] Suicide Prevention Courses: [] National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Utah[[br]] [][[br]] 801-323-9900[[br]] Toll Free 877-230-6264 Utah Suicide & Crisis Hotline[[br]] [] Davis County/Layton[[br]] Davis Behavioral Health[[br]] 24 Hour Crisis Response[[br]] 801-773-7060 Ogden[[br]] Weber Mental Health[[br]] Serving Davis, Morgan, & Weber Counties[[br]] Crisis/Suicide Prevention Hotline[[br]] 801-625-3700 Orem[[br]] Crisis Line of Utah County[[br]] 801-226-4433 Provo[[br]] Wasatch Mental Health[[br]] Crisis Line[[br]] 801-373-7393 Salt Lake City[[br]] Valley Mental Health[[br]] Serving Salt Lake, Summit & Tooele Counties[[br]] 801-261-1442 Permission to Grieve: For Survivors of a Loved One's Suicide[[br]] []

Health Program Information

The Violence and Injury Prevention Program (VIPP) is a trusted and comprehensive resource for data related to violence and injury. Through education, this information helps promote partnerships and programs to prevent injuries and improve public health. VIPP goals are to a) focus prevention efforts on reducing intentional and unintentional injury, b) conduct education aimed at increasing awareness and changing behaviors that contribute to the occurrence of injury, c) strengthen local health department capacity to conduct local injury prevention programs, d) promote legislation, policy changes, and enforcement that will reduce injury hazards and increase safe behaviors, e) collaborate with private and public partners, and f) improve the Utah Department of Health capacity to collect mortality and morbidity data from multiple sources and conduct injury epidemiology for use in prevention planning, implementation, and evaluation.
Page Content Updated On 11/19/2018, Published on 11/27/2018
The information provided above is from the Department of Health's Center for Health Data IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Mon, 18 November 2019 19:29:17 from Department of Health, Center for Health Data, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Thu, 20 Jun 2019 13:03:27 MDT