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Arizona Joins National Violent Deaths Reporting System

Arizona ranks among the top 15 states for murders and suicides. 

The state is joining a national service that will help health officials better understand why violence rates are high here.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is giving Arizona money to join the National Violent Death Reporting System.

That’s a program that makes it easier for states to link hospital and law enforcement data on violent deaths.   

Arizona will use its share of the $7.5 million grant to participate in the survey over the next five years. 

“Violent deaths cost the United States an estimated $107 billion in medical care and lost productivity every year," said Janet Blair, a violence prevention specialist with the CDC. "But, the good news is that violence can be prevented."

According to the Department of Public Safety, there were 312 homicides statewide last year. That’s down slightly from 2012, but Arizona still has one of the nation’s highest rates of women murdered by men. 

 

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KJZZ Senior Field Correspondent Steve Shadley is no stranger to the issues shaping Arizona.