Veterinarians Face Unique Issues that Make Suicide One of the Profession’s Big Worries

September 27, 2019

News Type:  Weekly Spark, Weekly Spark News


The veterinary field is working to reduce suicide by addressing the unique factors that place veterinarians at risk. These factors include regular exposure to death, pressure to provide free services, and financial challenges. National data suggest nearly 10 percent of veterinarians experience serious psychological distress, but only half of those seek help. In response, veterinary hospitals across the country are launching programs to promote mental health and prevent suicide. For example, Banfield Pet Hospital recently released a training to help veterinarians recognize and respond to the warning signs for suicide in coworkers. “If we can teach people what it looks like when someone is in emotional distress, and we can teach them how to break through and connect with that person emotionally and compassionately and lead them to professional help, I know we will help,” said Lisa Stewart-Brown, a clinical social worker who developed the training.

Spark Extra! Learn more about preventing suicide in workplaces.