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  • Great question, but one that we cannot answer solely with the DoDSER system. The mission of the DoDSER system is to monitor risk factors and rates associated with suicide as closely as possible so that risk profiles can be determined. The DoDSER, however, is not designed to address potential causes of suicide or WHY certain groups may have different rates (i.e. geographical regions). To really get at the WHY (i.e. the causal factors for suicide) individuals who engage in suicide related behavior would have to be compared to those who do not (or a valid variant of that comparison), and both groups would have to be as similar as possible in all other ways, except for those factors that are specifically being researched. As a research question, it moves beyond what we can address with the DoDSER system alone.

    -- Dr. Larry Pruitt

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