More Iowans committed suicide in 2014 - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

More Iowans committed suicide in 2014

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DES MOINES (AP) - Health officials say more than 400 Iowans committed suicide in 2013, a 17 percent increase from the previous year.

The Iowa Department of Public Health released data last month that reveals 445 such deaths statewide in 2013, the most since at least 1989.

The suicide rate was 14.4 per 100,000 people, up from 12.8 in 2012.

Iowa's suicide rate exceeds those of neighboring Illinois and Wisconsin, the Telegraph Herald reports.

Officials say changes to Iowa's mental health system might improve crisis intervention in eastern Iowa.

Clete Gartner, a National Alliance on Mental Illness-Dubuque member, says criteria for hospitalization for mental health crises leave some without needed support. He says officials are pushing for law enforcement training and the expansion of in-between care systems to help stem Iowa's suicide spike.

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