MedStar’s annual Riding for Life event brings awareness, education and resources for our area first responders and military veterans.
According to a study published in the Journal of Pre-hospital Emergency Care, the proportion of deaths attributed to suicide among EMTs was 5.2% while the percentage among non-EMTs was 2.2%
According to another recently released study by the Ruderman Foundation, in 2017, there were at least 140 police officer suicides, 103 firefighter suicides and 17 suicides of emergency medical technicians.
In citing the results from the study, Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation stated
“First responders are heroes who run towards danger every day in order to save the lives of others. They are also human beings, and their work exerts a toll on their mental health.”
The stressors of daily life, combined with the additional stress and emotional trauma 1st Responders face in the fulfillment of their vocational calling, it all too often leads to tragedy.
The primary message is that it’s OK to not be OK, but it’s not OK to ignore the signs and symptoms of psychological trauma and stress.
For 1st Responders, and those who love them, watch for the signs of stress and potential suicide risk.
This is an annual event and the next ride is scheduled for Saturday, September 12, 2020.