The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced new state awardees for the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS). The CDC’s $7.5 million in funding will expand NVDRS from 18 to 32 participating states and enable greater collection of critical data on violent deaths.
Tragically, more than 39,000 people died by suicide in the United States in 2011 while an additional 17,000 people have died due to homicide.
The NVDRS provides states and communities with a clearer understanding of violent deaths to guide local decisions about efforts to prevent violence and track progress over time.
It is the only state-based surveillance – reporting – system that pools data on violent deaths from multiple sources into a usable, anonymous database. These sources include state and local medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement, crime labs and vital statistics records.
The CDC continues to improve the NVDRS system by promoting greater functionality and improved access to data.
In 2013, NVDRS moved to a web-based system that makes the data easily accessible. These data inform the development, implementation and evaluation of violence prevention strategies, which can ultimately save lives.
States that are funded for NVDRS operate under a cooperative agreement with CDC to whom all violent deaths are voluntarily reported. NVDRS funded six states initially. In 2009, the CDC received funding to expand the system to a total of 18 states. The goal is to include eventually all 50 states, all U.S. territories and the District of Columbia in the system.
Illinois has just been added to the list and information concerning statistics will be available soon. Violent death is a conversation no one wants to discuss but it must be. It includes homicide by a partner, child abuse, suicides and deaths where people have been killed in the line of duty as well as gang-related drive-by shootings or robberies.
After the contestability period that is generally two years, life insurance will pay a death benefit for suicide and murder.
Deaths by violence are happening too often today with an average of more than six people dying a violent death every hour. Finding the basis for why through statistics is the best way to design and implement prevention efforts.