For as much flak as Logic took — and probably still takes — for his earnest 2017 suicide prevention anthem “1-800-273-8255,” it turns out that the song was actually pretty effective in its stated purpose, according to a study in The BMJ (British Medical Journal). While correlation by no means equals causation, the study found that during three key periods of the song’s popularity, suicide rates among 10- to 19-year-olds in the US dropped by 5.5 percent. A corresponding model of the same time periods in different years shows that this comes out to about 245 fewer suicides.
The three periods examined included the first 34 days after the song’s release, after Logic’s 2017 MTV VMAs performance, and after his 2018 Grammy Awards performance. The study also found that the number of calls made to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, from which the song takes its title, rose by 6.9 percent, or 9,915 more calls than usual — something that was reported previously but bears repeating.
The study’s author, Thomas Niederkrotenthaler, an associate professor in the department of social and preventive medicine at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria, told CNN, “Celebrities but also non-celebrities can have an important role in suicide prevention if they communicate about how they have coped with crisis situations and suicidal ideation.” Meanwhile, Logic himself seemed pretty enthused about the analysis, saying, “To know that my music was actually affecting people’s lives, truly, that’s what inspired me to make the song. We did it from a really warm place in our hearts to try to help people. And the fact that it actually did — that blows my mind.”