Attention A T users. To access the menus on this page please perform the following steps. 1. Please switch auto forms mode to off. 2. Hit enter to expand a main menu option (Health, Benefits, etc). 3. To enter and activate the submenu links, hit the down arrow. You will now be able to tab or arrow up or down through the submenu options to access/activate the submenu links.
Veterans Crisis Line Badge

Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs


VA launches program to send caring letters to 90,000 Veterans

Oct. 5, 2020, 04:17:00 PM

Printable Version

VA launches program to send caring letters to 90,000 Veterans

Evidence-based research shows simple act can help prevent Veteran suicide

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced today its  Veterans Crisis Line (VCL) formally launched the Caring Letters Program, an evidence-based suicide prevention intervention that involves sending periodic messages with simple expressions of care and concern to Veterans who use VA health care and contact the VCL.

The program aligns with the 2019 VA/DOD Clinical Practice Guidelines, which suggests brief, nondemanding follow-up communication keeps Veterans engaged and could facilitate opportunities for connecting them with treatment options.

“In the first 11 weeks of the program VCL has mailed Caring Letters to almost 30,000 Veterans,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “This is one of the largest caring letters programs ever implemented. We’re planning to send letters to over 90,000 Veterans over a  12-month period of time.”

Research has found caring letters can reduce the rate of suicide and suicide behaviors for individuals receiving them. Caring letters are thought to reduce suicide by promoting a feeling of caring connection and reminding Veterans that help is available if they need it.

Learn more about VA’s suicide prevention resources and programs

If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, contact the Veterans Crisis Line to receive free, confidential support and crisis intervention available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Call 1-?800-273-8255 and Press 1, text 838255 or chat online at?

Reporters covering this issue can download?VA’s Safe Messaging Best Practices?fact sheet or visit?Reporting On Suicide?for important guidance on how to communicate about suicide.?


Disclaimer of Hyperlinks

The appearance of external hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the Department of Veterans Affairs of the linked web sites, or the information, products or services contained therein. For other than authorized VA activities, the Department does not exercise any editorial control over the information you may find at these locations. All links are provided with the intent of meeting the mission of the Department and the VA website. Please let us know about existing external links which you believe are inappropriate and about specific additional external links which you believe ought to be included by emailing

People wishing to receive e-mail from VA with the latest news releases and updated fact sheets can subscribe to the
VA Office of Public Affairs Distribution List.

Back to News Releases Index

Search VA News Releases