Texas Health Organization Providing Free Suicide Prevention Resources to Veterans

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At least 511 Texas veterans died by suicide in 2018, according to the most recent data from the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

DALLAS –

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is encouraging Texas veterans to access the free suicide prevention and PTSD treatment resources that the organization is offering this month.

June is Texas Veterans Suicide Prevention and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Month.

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission administers the Veterans Mental Health Program in partnership with the Texas Veterans Commission. The program funds peer counseling for ex-combatants and their families through local mental health authorities and local behavioral health authorities.

“When a veteran struggles with PTSD, not only does it impact him, but it also affects his family, friends and community,” said Sonja Gaines. She is the Deputy Executive Commissioner for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Behavioral Health Services.

“Asking for help is the first step in getting support for them and preventing suicide. We connect veterans with mental health care and other invaluable services that can help them. “

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HHSC also funds and administers the TexVet initiative which includes a website hosted by the Texas A&M Health Science Center. The website helps Veterans navigate the resources available in their communities, including mental health care providers, social groups, placement programs and legal aid. Veterans can also find additional resources by visiting MentalHealthtx.org/veterans.

“It is important that we know the signs of mental health problems in our friends, family members and others,” said Dr. Blake Harris. He is the director of the Veterans Mental Health Department of the Texas Veterans Commission.

“With education and awareness, we can help people with mental health problems, help prevent self-destructive behavior, and increase well-being for them and those around them.”

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At least 511 Texas veterans died by suicide in 2018, according to the most recent data from the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

That suicide rate is almost double the suicide rate for non-veterans in the state, according to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission.

The US Department of Veterans Affairs attributes some of these deaths to military-related trauma that affects 11-30% of veterans.

Texas Veterans in Crisis can call the Veterans Crisis Line at 800-273-8255 and press 1, text 838255, or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.



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