CDC provides technical assistance for the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) in the form of manuals and complementary resources.
For further information on NVDRS, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- NVDRS Overview [372 KB, 2 Pages]
This fact sheet describes how the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) helps CDC monitor and track deaths related to violence. It also provides information on the benefits and challenges of NVDRS, examples of program highlights, and next steps. Also available in Spanish [221 KB, 2 Pages]
- NVDRS and Law Enforcement [722 KB, 2 Pages, 508]
This fact sheet describes how the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) allows law enforcement to have a comprehensive view of violent deaths. Also available in Spanish [146 KB, 2 Pages, 508]
- NVDRS and Coroner/Medical Examiner Partners [577 KB, 2 Pages, 508]
This factsheet describes the essential role coroners/medical examiners have in NVDRS. Also available in Spanish [134 KB, 2 Pages, 508]
- NVDRS and Vital Registrars [3 MB, 2 Pages]
This factsheet describes the essential role vital registrars have in NVDRS. Also available in Spanish [2 MB, 2 Pages]
- NVDRS Implementation Manual [1.83 MB, 67 Pages, 508]
The NVDRS Implementation Manual is a training tool for public or private agencies that want to implement a violent death reporting system in their jurisdictions. The manual provides helpful information on what types of data to collect, where to collect them, and how to work best with data providers.
- NVDRS Coding Manual Version 6.0 [4.47 MB, 271 Pages]
The NVDRS Web Coding Manual is a reference document for defining cases, entering data, and checking data once it is entered. It contains information about individual variables and the way the data are structured.
- NVDRS Infographic
This infographic shows how data from the National Violent Death Reporting System can help prevent violent deaths.
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports (MMWRs):
This is a list of MMWRs published within the last 5 years. For a complete list of NVDRS MMWRs, please visit the MMWR website.
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 48 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, 2020
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 42 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, 2019
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 39 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, 2018
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 34 States, Four California Counties, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, 2017
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 32 States, 2016
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 27 States, 2015
- Surveillance for Violent Deaths — National Violent Death Reporting System, 17 States, 2014
NVDRS increases our knowledge about where violent deaths occur, who is most at risk, and the factors that contribute to violent deaths. These data provide the foundation for building successful strategies for preventing violence so that all communities are safe and free from violence and people can live to their full potential. The following impact examples demonstrate significant efforts from states using NVDRS data to inform prevention-focused programming.
- Arizona Violent Death Reporting System (AZ-VDRS) data informed statewide suicide prevention efforts
From 1999-2016, Arizona‘s suicide rate was higher than the United States average. In 2017, Arizona’s age-adjusted suicide rate was 18.2 deaths per 100,000 population, compared to 14.0 deaths per 100,000 nationally. Knowing this, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey established a goal to prioritize healthy people and communities, and mental health resources and suicide prevention strategies became vital components to achieve that goal. The AZ-VDRS resource supports this work with data that identifies populations, locations, and circumstances associated with suicide. For example, AZ-VDRS data helped inform and expand efforts like the national veteran suicide prevention campaign, Be Connected, to address veteran suicide in Arizona. As the AZ-VDRS provides further analyses, the Governor’s Suicide Prevention Goal Council, a prevention strategy planning and implementation committee, will use AZ-VDRS data to inform future efforts.
- Kansas Violent Death Reporting System (KS-VDRS) data informed youth suicide prevention task force
A 2018 report showed that Kansas suicide rates increased 45% between 1999 and 2016, making Kansas fifth in the nation for increasing suicide rates. The national average increase over that time was 25.4%. In 2018, the Kansas State Child Death Review Board 2020 Annual Report reported 35 suicides among children ages birth through 17 years old, nine of which were age 14 or younger. Due to these trends, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt and partners formed a Youth Suicide Prevention Task Force. The task force used KS-VDRS data and CDC suicide prevention resources to develop eight recommendations for the state. Because of these recommendations, the attorney general’s office appointed a legislatively mandated Youth Suicide Prevention Coordinator and is developing a suicide prevention mobile application to provide youth with mental health resources.
- Massachusetts Violent Death Reporting System (MA-VDRS) data informed railway suicide prevention efforts
In 2017, the number of Massachusetts deaths associated with being struck by a train increased, compared to 2016 data. In response to these deaths, the Commuter Rail Collision Reduction Committee (CRCRC), comprised of state agency and partner organization members, formed to review information on commuter railway deaths and develop prevention recommendations. The MA-VDRS data provided insights into the circumstances surrounding these deaths and identified locations where suicides happened most frequently. With this information, the state targeted those areas with signage promoting the national suicide prevention line and improved physical barriers, such as fencing. The CRCRC reports that recent preliminary data suggest a decrease in the number of suicides on commuter railways since this committee formed and from these interventions.
- New Jersey Violent Death Reporting System (NJ-VDRS) data used to prevent youth suicide
New Jersey suicide rates increased 19.2% from 1999-2016. According to the State of New Jersey Department of Children and Families, “suicide is the third leading cause of death for New Jersey youth between 10 and 24 years of age.” Therefore, New Jersey focused on youth suicide prevention, using NJ-VDRS data to inform efforts. The New Jersey Department of Children and Families and the New Jersey Department of Health’s 2017 Youth Suicide Report described two of New Jersey’s funded programs for youth suicide prevention and public education. The first program is a confidential, anonymous, 24/7 helpline for New Jersey youth ages 10-24, where trained counselors help youth make healthy decisions and manage issues about peer relationships, bullying, mental health, dating, sex/sexuality, and more. Between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2017, the helpline identified 1,426 suicide-related conversations via phone conversations and texts. The second program promotes mental health awareness in schools through a curriculum including suicide prevention, intervention, postvention, trauma response and technical assistance to schools and communities. NJ-VDRS data have also informed the various programs that set objectives for Healthy New Jersey 2020, a statewide New Jersey Department of Health initiative that aims to address several public health issues, including reducing high school student suicide attempts. By 2019, 5.9% of all students reported a suicide attempt in the previous year, a relative decrease of 18.1% from baseline (7.2%) and exceeding the original objective’s targeted decrease. NJ-VDRS data continues to help identify and monitor progress and disparities in youth suicide rates and helps the state focus future prevention efforts on those most at risk.
- Oregon Violent Death Reporting System (OR-VDRS) data used to identify suicides in veterans
In Oregon, suicide is the leading cause of death among veterans younger than 45 years, with approximately 23% of Oregon’s total suicides occurring among veterans. OR-VDRS data found that 97% of suicides among veterans were male, and firearms were a dominant suicide mechanism. Also, 75% of male veterans ages 18-64 who died by suicide had a diagnosed mental disorder, alcohol and/or substance use problem, or depressed mood at time of death. However, only about one third of victims were receiving mental health treatment at time of death. To address this rising problem, National Guard soldiers began participating in trainings on intervention skills before deployment. The state legislature passed a bill to add veteran suicide indicators to Oregon death certificates to increase identification and tracking of veteran suicides. These steps are working in tandem to provide valuable information about veteran suicide in Oregon and develop more effective interventions.
- Utah Violent Data Reporting System data (UT-VDRS) informed Utah’s Teen Suicide Prevention Task Force
From 2011 to 2015, Utah Violent Death Reporting System (UT-VDRS) data found that the annual suicide rate among Utah youth age 10-17 years increased 136% compared to a 23.5% increase among U.S. youth. This state increase led to the creation of the Governor’s Teen Suicide Prevention Task Force. In 2018, the task force released recommendations to reduce the number of Utah youth suicides, including expanding mobile app use for young people to access real-time support, increasing mobile crisis outreach teams, and creating a suicide prevention fund that the state is implementing now. Additionally, in 2018, Utah lawmakers passed a record number of mental health and suicide prevention bills, informed by the taskforce’s recommendations. The eight new laws added counselors to Utah schools, bolstered the work of mental health crisis workers, and expanded the scope of youth suicide prevention programs in public schools, among other initiatives. Youth suicide prevention is also a focus for Utah communities who implement strategies at the local level, also informed by VDRS data. Recent data suggest a decrease in Utah teen suicides since this task force’s formation and the implementation of these legislative and community interventions.
- Vermont Violent Death Reporting System (VT-VDRS) data informed UMatter School/Community Suicide Prevention Program
Suicide rates increased 48.6% in Vermont from 1999 to 2016. Utilizing VT-VDRS data, the Vermont Suicide Prevention Center (VTSPC) identified youth 10-17 years old needed suicide prevention programming the most and focused their prevention efforts on that group. VTPSC implements UMatter, a nationally recognized program with a series of trainings in schools and communities that provides a strengths-based suicide prevention approach. The training helps participants identify and respond to youth who show signs of suicide, provides parent and staff awareness sessions, and develops pre-intervention and post-intervention suicide policies and protocols. According to the Center for Health and Learning’s 2019 Annual Report, 30 staff from 16 Vermont schools participated in a UMatter for Schools two-day workshop. In the last 10 years, 135 Vermont schools participated in suicide prevention, postvention, and implementation of Lifelines, a suicide prevention curriculum for grades 7-12.
- Wisconsin Violent Death Reporting System (WI-VDRS) data improves access to and quality of mental health services
The suicide rate increased 28.4% in Wisconsin between 2000 and 2019. According to the latest Wisconsin suicide prevention plan and surveillance report, Suicide in Wisconsin: Impact and Response, 271 adolescents (ages 10-19 years) died by suicide in Wisconsin from 2013 to 2017. WI-VDRS data helped inform which school districts and communities would benefit most from the Wisconsin School Mental Health Project, a five-year project launched in 2015 in more than 25 school districts, which includes a focus on youth suicide prevention. The project aims to reduce perceived stigma associated with mental illness and accessing mental health services. Through this project, school-community teams are trained to recognize the signs of youth who are having trouble, identify ways to intervene, and work with at-need students and their families to access appropriate services. The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction continues to support Youth Mental Health First Aid trainings through their Wisconsin Safe and Healthy Schools Center, including the rollout of virtual trainings of trainers during the pandemic.
- Fowler, KA, Leavitt, RA, Betz, C, Yuan, K, Dahlberg, LL. Examining differences between mass, multiple, and single-victim homicides to inform prevention: findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System. Inj. Epidemiol. 8, 49 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40621-021-00345-7
- Logan JE, Ertl A, Bossarte R. Correlates of intimate partner homicide among male suicide decedents with known intimate partner problems. Suicide and Life‐Threatening Behavior. 2019 Jun 12. DOI: 1111/sltb.12567
- Petrosky E, Blair JM, Betz CJ, Fowler KA, Jack SPD, Lyons BH. Racial and ethnic differences in homicides of adult women and the role of intimate partner violence – United States, 2003-2014. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2017 Jul 21;66(28):741-746. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6628a1.
- Blair JM, Fowler KA, Betz CJ, Baumgardner JL. Occupational homicides of law enforcement officers, 2003-2013: data from the National Violent Death Reporting System. Am J Prev Med 2016;51(5S3):S188-S196. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2016.08.019.
- Crosby AE, Lyons BH. Assessing homicides by and of U.S. law-enforcement officers. N Engl J Med 2016;20;375(16):1509-1511.
- DeGue S, Fowler KA, Calkins C. Deaths due to use of lethal force by law enforcement: findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System, 17 U.S. States, 2009-2012. Am J Prev Med 2016;51(5S3):S173-S187. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2016.08.027.
- Crosby AE, Ertl A, Lyons BH, Ivey-Stephenson AZ, Jack SP. Circumstances associated with suicides among females—16 states, United States, 2005–2016. Medical care. 2021 Feb 1;59:S92-9. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001482.
- Patrician PA, Peterson C, McGuinness TM. Original Research: Suicide Among RNs: An Analysis of 2015 Data from the National Violent Death Reporting System. Am J Nurs. 2020 Oct;120(10):24-28. doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000718624.25806.3f.
- Peterson C, Sussell A, Li J, Schumacher PK, Yeoman K, Stone DM. Suicide Rates by Industry and Occupation — National Violent Death Reporting System, 32 States, 2016. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2020;69:57–62. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6903a1.
- Dixon KJ, Ertl AM, Leavitt RA, Sheats KJ, Fowler KA, Jack SPD. Suicides Among Incarcerated Persons in 18 U.S. States: Findings From the National Violent Death Reporting System, 2003-2014. J Correct Health Care. 2020 Jul;26(3):279-291. doi: 10.1177/1078345820939512.
- Witte TK, Spitzer EG, Edwards N, Fowler KA, Nett RJ. Suicides and deaths of undetermined intent among veterinary professionals from 2003 through 2014. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2019 Sep 1;255(5):595-608. doi: 10.2460/javma.255.5.595.
- Lyons BH, Walters ML, Jack SP, Petrosky E, Blair JM, Ivey-Stephenson AZ. Suicides among lesbian and gay male individuals: findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System. American journal of preventive medicine. 2019 Apr 1;56(4):512-21. DOI: 1016/j.amepre.2018.11.012
- Tian N, Zack M, Fowler KA, Hesdorffor DC. Suicide Timing in 18 States of the United States from 2003–2014. Archives of Suicide Research. 2019 Apr 3;23(2):261-72. DOI: 1080/13811118.2018.1472689
- Annor FB, Zwald ML, Wilkinson A, et al. Characteristics of and precipitating circumstances surrounding suicide among persons aged 10–17 years — Utah, 2011–2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018;67:329–332. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6711a.
- Leavitt RA, Ertl A, Sheats K, Petrosky E, Ivey-Stephenson A, Fowler KA. Suicides among American Indian/Alaska Natives – National Violent Death Reporting System, 18 States, 2003-2014. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2018 Mar 2;67(8):237-242. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm6708a1.
- Petrosky E, Harpaz R, Fowler KA, Bohm MK, Helmick CG, Yuan K, Betz CJ. Chronic pain among suicide decedents, 2003 to 2014: findings from the National Violent Death Reporting System. Ann Intern Med 2018. doi: 10.7326/M18-0830.
- Stone DM, Simon TR, Fowler KA, et al. Vital Signs: trends in state suicide rates — United States, 1999–2016 and circumstances contributing to suicide — 27 states, 2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018;67:617–624. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6722a1.
- Holland KM, Vivolo-Kantor AM, Logan JE, Leemis RW. Antecedents of suicide among youth aged 11-15: a multistate mixed methods analysis. J Youth Adolesc 2017;46(7):1598-1610. doi: 10.1007/s10964-016-0610-3.
- Logan JE, Fowler KA, Patel NP, Holland KM. Suicide among military personnel and veterans aged 18-35 years by county-16 states. Am J Prev Med 2016;51(5S3): S197-S208. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2016.06.001.
- Stone DM, Holland KM, Schiff LB, McIntosh WL. Mixed methods analysis of sex differences in life stressors of middle-aged suicides. Am J Prev Med 2016;51(5S3): S209-S218. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2016.07.021.
- Tian N, Cui W, Zack M, Kobau R, Fowler KA, Hesdorffer DC. Suicide among people with epilepsy: a population-based analysis of data from the U.S. National Violent Death Reporting System, 17 states, 2003-2011. Epilepsy Behav 2016;61:210–7. doi: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2016.05.028.
- Peterson, C, Schumacher, PK, Steege, AL. Demographic considerations in analyzing decedents by usual occupation. American journal of industrial medicine. 2020 Aug 1;63(8), 663–675. doi.org/10.1002/ajim.23123.
- Fowler KA, Dahlberg LL, Haileyesus T, Gutierrez C, Bacon S. Childhood firearm injuries in the United States. Pediatrics 2017;140(1). pii: e20163486. doi: 10.1542/peds.2016-3486.
- Blair JM, Fowler KA, Jack SPD, Crosby AE. The National Violent Death Reporting System: overview and future directions. Inj Prev 2016;22:Suppl 1 i6-i11.
- Crosby AE, Mercy JA, Houry D. The National Violent Death Reporting System: past, present, and future. Am J Prev Med 2016;51(5S3):S169-S172. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2016.07.022.
- Call 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255)
- Use the online Lifeline Chatexternal icon
- Both are free and confidential. You’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor in your area.
- Visit CDC’s Suicide Prevention pages for more resources.