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B.C. notes no increase in suicides through COVID-19 pandemic

The BC Coroners Service (BCCS) has published data showing no increase in suicide rates in the province through the COVID-19 pandemic.

The data has been published in response to concerns about the impacts the pandemic has been having on the mental health of British Columbians.

According to the BCCS, 534 confirmed deaths by suicide were reported between April 2020 to February 2021.

This represents a 12% decrease from what was reported between April 2019 and February 2020.

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Through the 2020 calendar year, 609 deaths by suicide were reported across B.C., an average of 51 per month.

The BCCS said the figure is consistent with the 98 total deaths recorded in January in February of 2021, and represents a 9% decrease from the 652 deaths recorded in 2019.

Four of the Province’s five health authorities recorded fewer deaths between April 2020 and February 2021 than the same time frame from April 2019 to February 2020.

The BCCS said the numbers typically take some time to develop.

“Data and trends for 2020 and 2021 should be interpreted with caution as the data require time to settle. The final classification of suicide is not confirmed until the coroner’s investigation is complete,” said the BCCS.

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