SC VA holds conference on anti-suicide resources

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Officials at the Dorn Veterans Affairs Medical Center are hoping their first-ever health summit to battle suicide will help military veterans and families learn more about their services.

Dorn psychiatrist Dr. Oladipo Kukoyi (koo-KO’-ee) says he thinks the Columbia conference will increase communication among federal, state and private groups who want to prevent suicides.

VA officials estimate that about 20 military veterans commit suicide every day across the country.

The conference brought together medical, military, and private experts and specialists to seek ways to improve their cooperation on mental health and anti-suicide efforts.

Kukoyi says the conference came about after the Obama administration announced a plan to help veterans deal with post-traumatic brain injuries, mental health issues and to reduce suicides with such conferences.

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