District of Columbia Suicide Rates and Facts

Suicide is the 14th leading cause of death in Washington, D.C.


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An important goal of the federal government’s National Strategy for Suicide Prevention is to ensure community and clinical health care providers are trained in evidence-based suicide-specific assessments, management and delivery of effective clinical care.

Suicide Rates in the District of Columbia

Throughout Washington, D.C., suicide is the:

  • 3rd leading cause of death for ages 10-24
  • 4th leading cause of death for ages 25-34
  • 5th leading cause of death for ages 35-44
  • 8th leading cause of death for ages 45-54
  • 15th leading cause of death for ages 55-64
  • 20th leading cause of death for ages 65+
  • Overall, suicide is the 14th leading cause of death in Washington, D.C.

Six times as many people died by suicide in Washington, D.C. in 2018 than in alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents. On average, one person died by suicide every 7 days.

Suicide cost Washington, D.C. a total of $53,227,000 combined lifetime medical and work loss cost in 2010, or an average of $1,298,219 per suicide death.

*America Foundation for Suicide Prevention



While it is important that communities learn how to identify the signs of suicide risk (often referred to as “gatekeeper” training), and maintain local suicide prevention crisis lines, it is crucial to have a network of healthcare providers in place and trained in evidence-base suicide-specific treatment to whom people identified as suicidal may be immediately referred. Such suicide-specific treatment is not generally available in hospitals or emergency departments.

The CAMS Framework has been proven through multiple randomized clinical trials to be the best assessment, intervention and treatment to reduce suicide ideation. Mental health professionals have reported that the CAMS Framework has given them a way to confidently treat suicidal patients effectively in only 6-8 sessions. And, more importantly, patients have reported that they like using the CAMS Framework. It is recommended by such groups as the Zero Suicide Initiative, the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Sentinel Event Alert (PDF) by the Joint Commission, and the 2021 Surgeon General’s Call to Action (PDF).

Because CAMS is a flexible Framework, it can be easily adapted to cultural preferences, various populations and a range of clinical settings, such as active-duty military, veterans, adolescents, children, community mental health, crisis centers, employee assistance programs, forensic settings, inpatient, outpatient, primary care, school settings, telehealth and University Counseling Centers

The CAMS Framework has been on the cutting edge of telepsychology for a number of years. It has been proven effective in a variety of settings, including rural and frontier regions of the intermountain West of the United States, and the U.S. Army’s Warrior Resiliency Program in San Antonio, Texas for suicidal soldiers in geographically remote locations. CAMS is a highly interactive and collaborative structure that engages the patient in their own treatment and has been shown to be effective across a variety of settings.

CAMS-care offers several training options to meet various learning styles and budgets, as well as the challenges of remote rural communities. The CAMS treatment is available via online training, in-person role-play training, consultation calls, ZOOM training, and more.

Learn more about how CAMS addresses mental health. Find a CAMS Trained clinician in District of Columbia.


Below are the current requirements from this state for CE credits.

Washington, D.C. Social Workers Are Required to Take Up to 40 CE Credit Hours Every Two Years

Counselors Need 40 CE Credit Hours Every 2 Years in Washington, D.C.

Psychologists in Washington, D.C. Need 30 CE Credit Hours Every Two Years

Model Bill to Effectively Reduce the Suicide Rate in Washington, D.C.

While training communities to identify the signs of suicide risk is important, it is not enough to effectively reduce the suicide rate. Legislation must be passed that requires all mental health professionals and primary care physicians to receive training in evidence-based, assessment, management, intervention, and treatment of suicide risk. Because, everyone deserves a life worth living.


CAMS-care offers training courses and materials for individuals and organizations. Our products allow professionals to earn CE credits to meet your state’s CE requirements:


The CAMS proven framework is introduced in Dr. Jobes book, “Managing Suicidal Risk: A Collaborative Approach“. The current edition includes evidence data from decades worth of extensive research and has a greater emphasis on how to implement CAMS in clinical settings. You may earn 6 CE credits after reading the book and passing the CE test.


CAMS-care offers engaging video training opportunities that gives professionals to earn 1 – 3 CE credits. We’ve offer training in addressing malpractice and ethical liability when working with suicidal patients, tips suggestions for working with difficult patients, and treating suicide risk with children and adolescents.


We also provide online and on-site Role-Play Training, Consultation Calls, and host Education Days for more hands-on approaches to the CAMS framework.