University of Wisconsin–Madison Medical College of Wisconsin

Trends in Adult Suicide Rates in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, 2002 through 2020

Andrew T. Schramm, PhD; Jacey Kant, BS; Carissa W. Tomas, PhD; Arnitta R. Holliman, MS, LPC; Vaynesia T. Kendrick, MS; Hason Khan, MS; Susan Cronn, APNP, DNP; Terri A. deRoon-Cassini, PhD; Sara A. Kohlbeck, MPH

WMJ. 2023;122(4):268-271.

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Background: Monitoring suicide rates is an important public health strategy to inform prevention efforts. We describe rates of adult suicide in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, over a 19-year period.

Methods: Data on all adult suicides from 2002 through 2020 (n = 981) were obtained from the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office. Subpopulation rates were identified using the Wisconsin Interactive Statistics on Health System.

Results: Suicide rates increased significantly over the study period, with disproportionate increases among Black and Latinx residents.

Discussion: Expanded prevention efforts are needed to reverse this concerning trend. Further research should guide development of culturally relevant interventions, provide data for the equitable allocation of limited resources.

Author Affiliations: Department of Surgery, Trauma and Acute Care Surgery, Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Schramm, Cronn, deRoon-Cassini); Comprehensive Injury Center, MCW, Milwaukee, Wis (Schramm, Tomas, Cronn, deRoon-Cassni, Kohlbeck); Institute for Health Equity, MCW, Milwaukee, Wis (Tomas); Office of Violence Prevention, Milwaukee Health Department, Milwaukee, Wis (Holliman, Kendrick); Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, Kansas City, Missouri (Khan).
Corresponding Author: Andrew T. Schramm, PhD, 8701 W Watertown Plank Rd, Milwaukee, WI 53226, phone 414.955.1746; email; ORCID ID 0000-0002-3168-026X
Financial Disclosures: None declared.
Funding/Support: None declared.
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