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Substance Abuse Epidemiology Profile for Suicide Death

Problem Statement

Suicidal behaviors are a serious public health problem and a major cause of morbidity and mortality in New Mexico. In 2017, suicide was the ninth leading cause of death in NM, the second leading cause of death by age group for persons 5-34 years of age and the fourth leading cause of death by age group for persons 35-44 years of age. Suicide accounted for 15,048 Years of Potential Life Lost (YPLL), fourth after unintentional injuries, cancer, and heart disease deaths. The YPLL is a measure of premature mortality in a population that describes the impact of injury-related deaths on a society compared to other causes of death. Suicide deaths have been increasing in both New Mexico and the United States, with suicide death rates in NM at least 50% higher than U.S. rates over the past 20 years. Mental disorders, particularly clinical depression, increase the risk for both attempted suicide and suicide. Other risk factors associated with suicide include a previous suicide attempt, alcohol and substance abuse, a family history of suicide, a history of child maltreatment, feelings of hopelessness, isolation, barriers to mental health treatment, loss (of relationships, social connections, work, finances), physical illness, and easy access to lethal methods, such as firearms.
Since 1995, NM suicide rates have been consistently 1.5 times higher than national rates. From 2006-2016, suicide deaths increased in NM by about 25% compared to a 23% increase in the U.S.


Chart 1. Suicide Deaths by Year, New Mexico and the United States, 1995-2017

Suicide Deaths by Year, New Mexico and the United States, 1995-2017

::chart - missing::
confidence limits

Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.   All rates are per 100,000, age-adjusted to the 2000 U.S. standard population.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), New Mexico Department of Health.
  • New Mexico Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program, http://gps.unm.edu/.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, CDC WONDER Online Database (http://wonder.cdc.gov).

Table 1. Suicide Deaths by Age, Sex and Race/Ethnicity, New Mexico, 2012-2016

Number of DeathsDeaths per 100,000 Population
Sex and Race/EthnicityAges 0-24Ages 25-64Ages 65+All AgesAges 0-24Ages 25-64Ages 65+All Ages
Male, American Indian27116915214.452.626.135.3
Male, Asian/Pacific Islander182113.717.729.312.7
Male, Black61312012.319.49.114.6
Male, Hispanic1364135860712.934.425.125.5
Male, White8558326993716.652.860.341.2
Male, All Races2571,1403481,74514.143.247.733.6
Female, American Indian212534911.210.369.9
Female, Asian/Pacific Islander26197.810.68.89.2
Female, Black0606012.607.1
Female, Hispanic3010911150393.96.3
Female, White24229663195.120.512.813.8
Female, All Races77376815344.4149.39.9
Both Sexes, American Indian481411220112.830.414.221.9
Both Sexes, Asian/Pacific Islander3143205.713.716.510.7
Both Sexes, Black6191266.616.64.511.5
Both Sexes, Hispanic16652269757821.613.415.7
Both Sexes, White1098123351,25611.136.634.827.4
Both Sexes, All Races3341,5164292,2799.428.526.721.5


Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.   (*) Values are unstable. (**) Values are extremely unstable.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), New Mexico Department of Health.
  • Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program, http://gps.unm.edu/.

Problem Statement (continued)

The highest rates of suicide are found in the age-group of 25-64, with male AI/AN and male Whites showing the highest rates. In the age-group of 0-24 this same two groups present the highest rates, again the male AI/AN having the highest rates within this age-group. The contrary is observed for the age-group of 65+, where the White males exhibit the highest rate.
Catron and Sierra are the counties with the highest AI/AN suicide rate. For Hispanics, Catron and Mora show the highest rates. For Whites, the counties with the highest rates are De Baca and Union.

Table 2. Suicide Deaths by County and Race/Ethnicity, New Mexico, 2012-2016

Number of DeathsDeaths per 100,000 Population, Age-adjusted
CountyAmerican IndianAsian PIBlackHispanicWhiteAll RacesAmerican IndianAsian PIBlackHispanicWhiteAll Races
Bernalillo22101223641270215.91011.814.626.120.3
Catron1004913143.2****144.755.971.5
Chaves10116527236.6**30.29.636.522.3
Cibola9008153117.4****17.546.822.8
Colfax0007613******21.110.916.8
Curry11510213753.612.527.810.715.514.5
De Baca000033********33.220.9
Dona Ana302699617637.2**11.410.426.816.7
Eddy000293760******24.827.523.3
Grant000153346******2352.834.9
Guadalupe000315******20.336.824.5
Harding000000************
Hidalgo0007512******65.465.263.5
Lea11111405234.930.45.95.529.316.4
Lincoln00032527******9.626.521
Los Alamos00011112******5.816.513.5
Luna00081520******11.128.714
McKinley800013109930.6****29.422.328.3
Mora000706******42.5**30.2
Otero3111358771322.55.712.828.822.5
Quay0006811******3039.424.3
Rio Arriba60038135823.3****27.946.229.6
Roosevelt0005912******11.616.313.2
Sandoval1810417914521.610.6**15.723.521.3
San Juan5011197314021.153.122.917.325.322.3
San Miguel100281036640.8****26.625.225
Santa Fe13275901624.123.429.819.724.820.9
Sierra00041924******25.238.839.6
Socorro00091421******2136.622.6
Taos20023264920.8****27.347.831.7
Torrance00041418******13.93323.4
Union000245******23.635.622.1
Valencia22137418312.67424.51928.922.3
NM20120267121,2502,22921.910.711.514.927.121.2


Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.   All rates are per 100,000, age-adjusted to the 2000 US standard population (*) Values are unstable. (**) Values are suppressed due to small numbers.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), New Mexico Department of Health.
  • Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program, http://gps.unm.edu/.

Chart 2. Suicide Deaths by County, New Mexico, 2013-2017



Suicide Deaths by County, New Mexico, 2013-2017

::chart - missing::
confidence limits

Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.   All rates are per 100,000, age-adjusted to the 2000 U.S. standard population. (#) Values are unstable. (##) Values are very unstable.

Data Sources

  • New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), New Mexico Department of Health.
  • New Mexico Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program, http://gps.unm.edu/.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, CDC WONDER Online Database (http://wonder.cdc.gov).

Chart 3. Suicide Deaths by County, New Mexico, 2012-2016

Suicide Deaths by County, New Mexico, 2012-2016

supplemental image

Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.

Chart 4. Suicide Deaths by Small Area, New Mexico, 2010-2014



Suicide Deaths by Small Area, New Mexico, 2010-2014

supplemental image



Data Notes

Suicide deaths for 1995-1998 were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 9 (ICD-9) codes; and suicide deaths for 1999 and later were defined by underlying cause of death based on International Classification of Diseases, version 10 (ICD-10) codes.   All rates are deaths per 100,000 population and have been age-adjusted to the U.S. 2000 standard population.
Page Content Updated On 12/12/2018, Published on 01/09/2019
The information provided above is from the New Mexico Department of Health's NM-IBIS web site (http://ibis.health.state.nm.us). The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: "Retrieved Tue, 07 July 2020 from New Mexico Department of Health, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: http://ibis.health.state.nm.us".

Content updated: Wed, 1 May 2019 12:40:30 MDT