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Suicide among Veterans receiving Veterans Health Administration Home Based Primary Care and following discharge from Community Living Centers.

Cooper SA, Szymanski BR, Karel MJ, Katz IR, McCarthy JF. Suicide among Veterans receiving Veterans Health Administration Home Based Primary Care and following discharge from Community Living Centers. Suicide & Life-Threatening Behavior. 2021 Aug 1.

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Abstract:

INTRODUCTION: Veterans who receive Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Home Based Primary Care (HBPC) services and those discharged from VHA Community Living Centers (CLC) may be at increased risk of suicide. No studies to date have assessed suicide risks among HBPC patients. This study examined suicide risks among recipients of VHA HBPC services and following discharge from VHA CLCs, as compared to other Veteran VHA users. METHODS: We identified three cohorts of 2013 Veteran VHA patients: 47,842 HBPC users, 17,725 with live discharges from CLCs, and 5,554,635 other VHA users. Using proportional hazards regression, we assessed risk of suicide through 2016. RESULTS: Overall, HBPC recipients did not differ from the other cohorts in suicide risk. Although in unadjusted analyses CLC discharged patients had greater suicide risk than the general VHA patient cohort (hazard ratio (HR)  =  1.73, 95% confidence interval  =  1.25-2.41), this became nonsignificant when controlling for diagnoses. CONCLUSIONS: Overall findings did not identify differential suicide risk among VHA HBPC recipients in 2013, when compared to other Veteran VHA patient cohorts. Veterans discharged from VHA CLCs have increased mental health morbidity, which was associated with increased suicide risk.





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