Veterans Crisis Line

On the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month of 1918, the fighting ended for World War I. That day, November 11, is now recognized in the United States as Veterans Day. Veterans Day honours all of those who have served the United States in war or peace.

I mention Veterans Day for two reasons. First, I would like to personally recognize and thank all of the veterans who are our colleagues at WellSpace Health. Their dedication to service continues with us and it is our honour to serve beside you.

Second, I would like all of us to recognize the veterans that we serve daily. Sadly, like many of our patients, we know that they come to us in the midst of many struggles and are often quite sick

Behavioral health is an area we know to be impacted. According to the National Veteran Suicide Prevention Annual Report, 7,058 veterans died from suicide in 2017.Veterans are 1.5 times more likely to die by suicide than Americans who never served in the military. For female veterans, the risk factor is 2.2 times more likely. Seventy percent of veteran suicide deaths were as a result of firearms.

These statistics are staggering and are a call to action for all of us. If you feel someone you know or serve is in crisis, please don’t hesitate to refer them to our Suicide Prevention and Crisis Line. Our colleagues serve everyone, but through the Veterans Crisis Line serve veterans, active military, and family members.

The Suicide Prevention and Crisis line and Veteran Crisis Line are available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255 or by texting the word HOPE to 916-668-iCAN (4226).

In addition to the services provided by WellSpace Health, there are a robust array of non-profits to help. The Sacramento Veterans Resource Center, which serves veterans experiencing homelessness, and the Forgotten Solider in Auburn, which offers a variety of integrated services for veterans with PTSD, TBI, depression, anxiety, and other physical and emotional needs, are just a few examples.

In closing, we all owe a debt of gratitude to veterans, so on this veterans day, please take a moment to thank a veteran or, as you do every day, provide them with the high quality care they so richly deserve.