On July 9, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee approved their Fiscal Year 2014 bill, which included a $15 million increase in funding for the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS). This was subsequently approved by the full Senate Appropriations Committee on July 11.
In order to design effective suicide prevention strategies, it is important to have complete, accurate and timely information about deaths by suicide. NVDRS provides this information, which is essential to improve federal and state suicide prevention activities. But current funding of $3.5 million allows only 18 states to participate in this program.
“Expansion of the NVDRS is a major priority for AFSP. Our visits to Congressional offices in June, coupled with field advocate emails and calls last week were responsible for getting this increased funding approved during the Subcommittee markup,” AFSP Senior Director of Public Policy John Madigan said.
“We ultimately beat back a rumored amendment that was to be offered during the full Committee markup that would have at minimum restricted the funding and at most stripped it entirely. This is a big step forward for NVDRS expansion.”
The House of Representatives has yet to vote on their version of a FY 2014 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Bill. The AFSP Public Policy Office will continue to work with the House to include increased funding for the NVDRS.
Click here to learn why the NVDRS is so vital to suicide prevention efforts.