» Study Shows Veterans Need Better Mental Health Support From Veterans Administration

Study Shows Veterans Need Better Mental Health Support From Veterans Administration

Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) July 9, 2013 – Though mental health support can literally save the lives of returning veterans, many must wait years for the help they need.

Legal Help for Veterans is a law firm helping veterans get the benefits they deserve.

A new study has determined that vets with mental health conditions including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression typically must wait an average of two years after returning from deployment before their mental health issues are addressed by Veterans Affairs (VA).

“When the vets do begin to receive mental health treatment, the study also found that care is often fragmented and not as effective as is needed,” commented veterans disability lawyer James Fausone.

The study, published in the journal Psychiatric Services in December 2012, looked at vets of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars between 2001 and 2011 processed by Veterans Affairs medical centers. These men and women typically were given eight sessions of mental health treatment, a number considered far lower than that in the civilian population looking for PTSD or depression support, and widely considered “minimally adequate.” Seventy-five percent of vets who went to the VA for support did not even receive what researchers dubbed “minimally adequate care.”

Numerous issues may delay mental health care for veterans, including the social stigma that may still lingerr around mental health issues for some people, including concern that seeking care may jeopardize future job prospects. The overburdened VA system also means that many vets have long waits to get appointments for initial assessment; the average wait for a mental health evaluation at the VA was 50 days, according to a 2012 report from the VA’s inspector general.

The VA has announced that it is adding additional staff and partnering with community health centers to broaden support for veterans in their communities; 15 clinics in seven U.S. states are now able to treat veterans with the VA’s approval.

But more is needed, say mental health advocates. The VA inspector general’s report found that approximately 30 percent of high-risk (i.e., potentially suicidal) vets were not receiving the mandated multiple follow-up mental health visits within 30 days after an emergency hospitalization. There was no documented contact by the VA of even reaching out to those vets to remind them of follow-up appointments.

James G. Fausone is a Veterans disability attorney and Veterans attorney with Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC. To learn more or to contact a Veterans disability attorney or Veterans attorney call 1.800.693.4800 or visit http://www.legalhelpforveterans.com.

Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC
41700 West Six Mile Road, Suite 101
Northville, MI 48168
Toll Free Phone: 800.693.4800

  • Michigan Veteran Implores Legislators to Act on Blocked Veteran Suicide Bill
    In early December, the Clay Hunt SAV Act was unanimously passed by the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill is designed to mobilize resources to address the current crisis in veteran suicides. But less than a week later, a sole U.S. senator, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, placed a hold on the bill, stopping further progress [...]
  • VA Goal to Eliminate Claims Backlog by End of 2015 Appears Out of Reach
    Carol Ann Fausone Brigadier General (ret) Positive reports surfaced last year on the significant reduction of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) backlog in benefits claims – VA workers slashed the backlog by over half to 245,000. VA officials were optimistic on cutting that number to zero by the end of 2015…but now that appears [...]
  • Veterans who suffer from Military Sexual Trauma Now Eligible for VA Health Care
    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced in early December that it would expand eligibility for veterans in need of mental health care due to sexual assault or sexual harassment that occurred during their military service. This expansion comes under the authority from the recent VACAA legislation (Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014). [...]

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required