Sen. Kevin Cramer champions a bill to lower veteran suicides
WASHINGTON – On Suicide Prevention Day, North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer introduces a bill to build on the Department of Veterans Affairs’ suicide prevention efforts.
It’s called the VA Zero Suicide Demonstration Project Act.
The Zero Suicide model aims to eliminate suicide through improvements in our health care systems.
A companion bill was introduced in the House this year.
A National Veteran Suicide Prevention report last year found, on average, 17 veterans take their own lives each day. Six of them sought care from the VA before committing suicide.
“The VA Zero Suicide Demonstration Project Act creates a pilot program aimed at lowering suicide risk for VA patients and it allows the VA Department to properly analyze it’s suicide prevention programs to better understand how to provide our veterans with mental health assistance,” Cramer said.
The pilot program would be at five V. medical centers. One must be for those who served are country living in rural areas.
North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum has declared September as Suicide Prevention Month in the state.