Researchers claim suicides on the rise in Tulsa - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

Researchers claim suicides on the rise in Tulsa


(Tulsa-AP) -- Researchers are trying to determine why the number of suicides is increasing in Tulsa.

Tulsa police say there have been 61 suicides in the city in 2000, and that the coming holiday season is historically a time when the number of suicides increases. There were 54 suicides reported in Tulsa during all of 1999.

Researchers at the Tulsa Institute of Behavioral Sciences say they're trying to find out if the deaths are related to changes in Oklahoma's mental health system.

The researchers say mental health advocates are asking them to look for any link between the suicides and a plan approved by the Legislature.

That plan closed most of Eastern State Hospital and many of the patients that were sent there now go to Parkside Psychiatric Hospital.

The state Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse is requiring Parkside to improve its procedure for handling suicidal patients.

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