Suicides are on the rise in Yakima and around the state and nation. It's a major mental health crisis that started to show increases in 2021 during the COVID pandemic.

SUICIDE NUMBERS ARE INCREASING NATIONWIDE

Early numbers from 2022 show suicides rose 2.6%. That rise after a 5% increase in suicides in 2021. How many people died? Officials at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 49,449 people died of suicides last year. The numbers were up from 48,183 suicides reported in 2021.

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IT'S NOT A BIG INCREASE IN YAKIMA COUNTY BUT IT'S AN INCREASE

Yakima County Coroner Jim Curtice says in 2022 29 people died from suicides. But numbers are already up to 32 this year and the year isn't yet over.
Overdose deaths continue even during the holidays.

NOT ONLY IS SUICIDE ON THE RISE BUT SO TO ARE OVERDOSE DEATHS

So far this year the number stands at 83 suspected or confirmed overdose deaths. The number was 75 last month. The number is approaching the record 95 overdose deaths recorded in 2021. Yakima County Coroner Jim Curtice says the deaths in 2021 set the bar for the county.
Curtice says at least 70% of the deaths are directly connected to the deadly drug fentanyl.

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