|RALEIGH — The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services released the North Carolina Violent Death Reporting System (NC-VDRS) Data Dashboard, an interactive online dashboard that provides aggregate information on violent deaths for all 100 counties in North Carolina. The NC-VDRS dashboard, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was created to make data more accessible to public health partners to inform the development, implementation and evaluation of prevention efforts around violence and safety.
NC-VDRS is a population-based, public health reporting system that captures anonymized information on deaths resulting from violence, including homicides, suicides and unintentional firearm deaths. NC-VDRS draws from three primary data sources: law enforcement records, death certificates and records from the NC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. Collectively, these enable a broader understanding of “who, when, where and how,” and also “why” these deaths occurred.
“NCDHHS is committed to transparency and continuously improving our data systems to give North Carolinians insight into key public health measures,” said Kody H. Kinsley, Chief Deputy Secretary for Health. “This information allows coordination across state, local, private and public partners to improve the whole person health and wellness of residents in our state.”
The new interactive data dashboard includes metrics on overall violent deaths, suicides, homicides and firearm-related deaths from 2004 through 2019. Violence, whether from assault or self-harm, takes the lives of more than five North Carolinians every day. In 2019, the most recent year where data is available, 2,184 North Carolinians died from violence.
Of those deaths, 1,356 (62%) were due to suicide and 716 (33%) were homicides. Additionally, 1,379 (63%) violent deaths were firearm-related; firearms are the most common method of violent death followed by hanging, strangulation and suffocation.