For your benefit: Hot line has prevented 2,600 suicides


POSTED: Sunday, March 08, 2009

Question: The Department of Veterans Affairs suicide hot line has been in operation for some time now. Has it been successful?

For your benefit: Hot line has prevented 2,600 suicides Since July 2007, VA has operated an around-the-clock suicide-prevention hot line that has received about 100,000 calls and has been credited with rescuing more than 2,600 people. The number for VA's suicide-prevention hot line is (800) 273-TALK. New requests or referrals for mental health appointments receive a preliminary evaluation within 24 hours and a comprehensive evaluation with 14 days. VA operates Readjustment Counseling Centers, commonly called Vet Centers, in 232 communities, where veterans can receive care for a wide variety of issues related to leaving the military. For additional information, contact the VA Pacific Islands Health Care System at 433-0600.

Q: If a veteran dies in a VA hospital, does VA put a death notice or obituary in the local newspaper or newspaper where the veteran lived?

A: For confidentiality reasons, VA does not submit a death or obituary notice to newspapers. Such notices are at the discretion of the veteran's family or guardian and are handled by the funeral home with the family's guidance.



If you have questions about your benefits as a veteran, call Fred Ballard at the Department of Veterans Affairs at 433-0049.