Which occupational groups in America had the highest suicide rates in 2012 and 2015? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest report shows which occupations had the highest suicide rates and which ones had the highest increase.

Suicide Rates By Occupation

According to the CDC, there was a 34 percent increase in suicide rates among the working age population in the United States from 2000 to 2016. This means that in that time, there was an increase from 12.9 to 17.3 per 100,000 population among the people ages 16 to 64 years old.

To understand the suicide rates by different occupational groups as well as to aid suicide prevention efforts, the agency looked at the suicide deaths reported in the 2012 and 2015 National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS), which involves data from 17 states.

Highest Suicide Rates By Occupation

Evidently, the occupational group with the highest suicide rate among men in both 2012 and 2015 is the Construction and Extraction group, while the occupational group with the highest female suicide rate in the same years is the Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media group.

Other occupational groups with high suicide rates among men are the Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media group, as well as the Installation, Maintenance, and Repair group. Among women, the other groups with high suicide rates include Protective Service and Health Care Support groups.

In both sexes, the occupational group with the lowest suicide rate is the Education, Training, and Library group.

That said, the occupational group with the highest suicide rate increase among men is the Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Industry, whereas the occupational group with the highest suicide rate increase among females is the Food Preparation and Serving Related group.

Suicide Prevention Efforts

With this data, the CDC states that comprehensive suicide prevention approaches are needed, including work-based ones.

“A better understanding of how suicides are distributed by occupational group might help inform prevention programs and policies. Because many adults spend a substantial amount of their time at work, the workplace is an important but underutilized location for suicide prevention,” the agency states.

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