National Council Statement on Updated Suicide Prevention Strategy


WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 23, 2024) — National Council for Mental Wellbeing President and CEO Chuck Ingoglia today released the following statement on the 2024 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and Federal Action Plan.

“We applaud the Biden-Harris Administration’s efforts on this revision of the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and Federal Action Plan. The plan hasn’t been updated in many years, and we welcome this revision and the crucial guidance it provides with respect to providing equitable approaches to suicide prevention and the three-pronged approach of prevention, intervention and postvention.

“There’s so much we can do to help people and provide them with the lifesaving support they need.

“The number of people who died by suicide in 2022 was the highest number since 1941. Nearly 50,000 individuals in the U.S. took their own lives in 2022, a 3% increase from 2021, according to provisional data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics. We must do all we can to ensure people have the resources they need.

“The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline has provided tremendous help, but there’s more we can do to raise awareness about 988 and ensure that this vital service has the resources it needs. We must also continue efforts to overcome a shortage of workers throughout the field of mental health and substance use treatment and care. As of March 2024, 122 million individuals were living in areas of the U.S. with mental health professional shortages, and the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration estimates that thousands more professionals are needed to ensure adequate supply.

“No one is immune from a mental health challenge. So, as we prepare to observe Mental Health Awareness Month in May, it’s important to remember that we must do all we can to help those in crisis because every life matters,” Ingoglia said.

About The National Council

Founded in 1969, the National Council for Mental Wellbeing is a membership organization that drives policy and social change on behalf of over 3,400 mental health and substance use treatment organizations and the more than 10 million children, adults and families they serve. We advocate for policies to ensure equitable access to high-quality services. We build the capacity of mental health and substance use treatment organizations. And we promote greater understanding of mental wellbeing as a core component of comprehensive health and health care. Through our Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) program, we have trained more than 3 million people in the U.S. to identify, understand and respond to signs and symptoms of mental health and substance use challenges.

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