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State health department says most violent deaths in Iowa are male suicides

DES MOINES – A report released this week by the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) shows the majority of violent deaths in Iowa are classified as suicide and 4 out of 5 suicides are males.

The Iowa Violent Death Reporting System (IAVDRS) is a CDC-funded statewide surveillance system that collects information on violent deaths from death certificates, and medical examiner and law enforcement reports. Iowa began collecting these data in 2015.

In 2017, there were 628 violent deaths in Iowa; 460 of those violent deaths were suicides. The age groups with the largest proportion of suicide deaths were people aged 25-44 and 45-64 (32% of deaths in each group). Intimate partner problems were noted as a contributing circumstance most often among young adults. Physical health problems were noted as a circumstance of suicide more often as age increased, particularly among middle-aged (42%) and older adults (68%).

Your Life Iowa is available to help if you are concerned about suicide for yourself or for someone you know. Free and confidential support and assistance is available 24/7 through live chat at, by calling 855-581-8111 or by texting 855-895-8398.

To see the full IAVDRS reports, visit this site.

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