Suicide: A Difficult, Yet Important Discussion

Published September 14, 2023

Dear Jacobs School Community –

September is Suicide Prevention Month. Talking about suicide and mental health can be difficult, but it's important to reduce stigma.

The medical profession has a disproportionally high rate of suicide as compared to other professions, and we must be leaders in preventing it. We can do this by showing understanding and compassion, and by encouraging people to reach out for support and offering avenues to do so.

A 2022 study published in Psychology, Health & Medicine found that approximately 119 physician suicides occur annually across the nation. And the American Medical Student Association reports that medical students are three times more likely to die by suicide than their same-age peers.

Silence can have tragic results, especially for those experiencing suicidal thoughts or who are supporting a suicidal friend, colleague or family member. They need resources to help them navigate this difficult journey.

As an academic health center, we must counter burnout, depression and related problems among our peers and our learners.

Suicide's reach goes far beyond the individual. It affects families, friends, co-workers, and the surrounding community. If you or someone you know is struggling, please reach out for help.

Here are some resources that can help:

Jacobs School and University at Buffalo resources:


Allison Brashear, MD, MBA
Vice President for Health Sciences and
Dean, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
University at Buffalo