Moran: disparity between VA, Operation Deep Dive suicide reports concerning

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Published: Sep. 20, 2022 at 8:56 AM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Senator Jerry Moran is concerned about the disparity between the Veterans Affairs veteran suicide report and the report from Operation Deep Dive.

U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) - ranking member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee - says on Monday, Sept. 19, that the Department of Veterans Affairs released its Annual Veteran Suicide Report.

“One life lost to suicide is one too many. I am encouraged by the VA’s report, however, the disparity between the numbers of veteran suicides reported by the VA and a recent report released by America’s Warrior Partnership, Operation Deep Dive, is also concerning,” Moran said.

Key findings in the 2022 VA Report include that in 2020, there were 6,146 veteran suicide deaths - 343 fewer than the previous year - with an unadjusted suicide rate of 31.7 veterans per 100,000. It found that between 2001 and 2020, the suicide rates for veterans peaked in 2018 and fell again in 2019 and 2020.

However, the Operation Deep Dive report indicates that it found a 37% greater suicide rate than reported by the VA between 2014 and 2018.

“We need an honest assessment of the scope of the problem and what factors play the biggest roles,” Moran said. “Finding solutions to veteran suicide will require greater collaboration among national and local partners and using the data we have to meet veterans where they are with the life-saving services they need.”

In 2020, the Senator said then President Donald Trump signed Moran’s Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act into law.