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Kids are 10 times more likely to die of suicide than coronavirus, medical professor warns

Dr. Martin Makary is sounding the alarm that children are 10 times more likely to die of suicide than coronavirus.

Makary is professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a professor of health policy and management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

“New research on kids we should have anticipated: Self-harm and overdoses increased 91-100%. Published this morning by @FAIRHealth @axios @caitlinnowens. Kids are 10X more likely to die of suicide than coronavirus. #OpenSchoolsNow to save lives,” he tweeted Tuesday.

The study he cites states was published March 2 by the nonprofit FAIR Health and titled “The Impact of COVID-19 on Pediatric Mental Health.” Its summary notes that kids’ self-harm and suicides have increased exponentially during COVID-19 lockdowns that have closed schools.

“In public health, research always lags behind reality and events,” Makary told Tucker Carlson on Tuesday night. “…This is the first of many research studies, and it looks pretty grim.”

MORE: Epidemiologist who warned against lockdowns predicts rise in youth suicides

He said the study found there has been a 300 percent increase in young people coming to doctors because they tried to hurt themselves, and that was found to be especially true in areas with strict COVID lockdown protocols.

A screenshot from the study’s summary:

“The fundamental problem is we have not looked at the totality of data on the health of kids and health consequences,” Makary said on Fox News on Tuesday. “… As a scientist, you’ve got to look at the totality of data on health outcomes.”

The doctor asked why kids are last in the COVID re-opening plans and said a lookback on the data will hopefully contain honest assessments.

In reporting on the study, Axios Vitals spelled out the warning flags it contains:

Teenagers’ demand for mental health care skyrocketed last year amid the pandemic, even as their overall need for care declined, according to a new analysis by FAIR Health.

Why it matters: Parents, schools and pediatricians have been warning for months that kids aren’t OK, and this analysis backs up their concern with numbers.

The big picture: The coronavirus pandemic has been disruptive to the lives of Americans of all ages, but for teenagers, the isolation and change in routine comes during a critical developmental stage.

In January, The College Fix reported on an Illinois teen who committed suicide, which his parents said was because of depression due to the COVID lockdown.

In December, The Fix reported on a Maine teen who committed suicide for reportedly the same reasons.

In August, The College Fix covered the warnings of a sports psychologist who shared the mental health risks of canceling high school sports.

MORE: High school athletes face depression and anxiety from loss of sports

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About the Author
Fix Editor
Jennifer previously worked as a daily newspaper reporter and columnist for a decade in Southern California, and prior to that held editorial positions at The Weekly Standard, Washington Times and FrontPageMagazine. She is also a Robert Novak Journalism Fellowship recipient and has contributed to National Review.