During National Public Health Week, April 3-9, we celebrate the progress we’ve made helping people live healthier lives and those public health professionals who have helped us make that progress. But one hallmark of public health is life expectancy, and the United States just experienced a drop in overall life expectancy for the first time since 1993. This was due in part to increases in two of the nation’s most heart-breaking and yet preventable public health issues facing us: the increasing rate of suicide and the increasing misuse of opioid drugs.
Suicide rates in less urban areas have been higher than those in more urban areas. During the time period 1999 to 2015, the gap in suicide rates increased between less urban and more urban areas.
Both opioid addiction and suicide are serious preventable and treatable public health problems, and everyone has a role to play. Learn about some of the available resources for treatment options, mental health and behavioral health issues and related concerns:
This information comes from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services HHS Blog post by Judy Sarasohn, HHS Public Affairs.