BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho’s death by suicide rate this year is similar to figures from 2019 and less than numbers from 2018, despite the effects of the pandemic, the Idaho Statesman reported.
As of Aug. 31, 248 people in Idaho had died by suicide in 2020. By the same date last year, 240 people in the state had died by suicide. For the same time period in 2018, Idaho reported 280 deaths by suicide.
Idaho had the fifth-highest number of suicides in the U.S. in 2018 with 409, while it was 38th in population, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. The state had 362 deaths by suicide in 2019.
Boise psychologist Dr. Christopher Edwards said anxiety and depression have increased due to the pandemic. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report from June said roughly 40% of American adults were struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues.
As of Monday, Idaho had reported 35,532 COVID-19 cases and 419 deaths due to the virus since the pandemic began.